National Conference on Assessment for Learning and Teaching for School Change

On 2nd September 2017, a national conference on assessment for learning and teaching for school change for teacher members of Facebook Assessment for Learning group was held in the University of Lower Silesia, Poland. The conference was a grassroot event organized with the teachers and academics as a part of EDiTE researcher Beata Zwierzynska’s action research with the group.

It started with the teachers’ requests to learn and to meet in real space. Since May 2017 teachers decided in polls and discussions on the group’s event site about the length and the place of the conference. One day event in Wroclaw with 12 workshops, 2 lectures, a panel discussion and a teachers’ exchange of practices, ideas and resources were decided.

The aim of the conference was to create a space for teachers to learn from one another but from the feedback it also turned out to be practitioner-academic meeting place.

The event was attended by about 70 participants from Poland – regular and  special needs education, primary, junior high school and high school teachers of different subjects, headmasters, school superintendent officer, professors, PhD students and democratic schools activists.



Pic. 1 – before the first plenary session

Practitioners were a part of the organizing committee. They volunteered to register participants, run all 12 workshops (including one by EDiTE researcher and practitioner Beata Telatynska). The teachers inspired the questions for the ‘Better School’ panel discussion and also took responsibilities to organize the workshops, dinner, coffee breaks, lead the exchange of practices, ideas and resources time, were participants of the panel, others were photographers and reporters on Facebook of the various things from the agenda during the conference and after it. Teachers opened and closed the conference.


Pic. 2 – registration for the conference


Pic. 3 – thanking teachers for workshops, closing the conference

Teachers’ involvement in the creation of the learning space can be best visualised by some artefacts visible on the photos: dozens of butterflies handmade by the teacher and headmaster who wanted to welcome the participants in her own way. Also, by the amount of materials brought by the teachers running the workshops (e.g. crafts, pendrives, handouts, teaching aids and resources to show or give out to the colleagues).


Pic. 4 – a workshop about assessment for learning in special needs education


Pic. 5 – a panel discussion and in the foreground, gifts prepared for the participants of one of the coming workshops


Pic. 6 – a workshop about students’ involvement through art in EFL classes

The conference programme:

8:00 – Registration
8:50 – A welcome–
room 112
9:05 – Lecture by prof. DSW dr hab. Paweł Rudnicki: “Teachers as true agents of school change. Resistance in educational practices” – room 112
10:05 – Discussion lead by prof. DSW dr hab. Paweł Rudnicki –
room 112
10:35 – 10:50 coffee break
10:50 – Workshops in parallel sessions

1) mgr Ewa Szpot, “Assessment (not only) with ICT” – room 112
2) mgr Beata Minta, “Using ICT in assessment for learning” –
room 113
3) mgr Beata Telatyńska, “‘Guilty’ of dyslexia” –
room 114
11:50 – Workshops in parallel sessions
4) mgr Alicja Nimirska, “Motivation techniques and methods for students to learn” –
room 112
5) mgr Paulina Hawrylewicz-Kowalska, “Individual teaching – a win or loss?” –
room 113
6) mgr Iwona Wojsznis-Gruszka, “Photos, pictures, mutisensory techniques” –
room 114
12:50 – Lecture by prof. DSW dr hab. Jolanta Zwiernik, “Is the change of the education model possible/necessary? Based on a project ‘Alternative education in pre-schools'” –
room 112
13:20 – 14:20 Dinner break and
teachers’ exchange of practices, ideas and resources
14:20 – Panel discussion – “Better school”: mgr Beata Minta (teacher), mgr Dorota Pląskowska-Grodzki (headmaster), mgr Beata Pazdej (
school superintendent officer) , mgr Marianna Kłosińska (democratic schools activist).
Moderator: prof. DSW dr hab. Ewa Kurantowicz –
room 112
15:20 –
Workshops in parallel sessions
7) mgr Ewa Szymkowiak, “Students discovering, creating, loving to bring their crafts to school” –
room 112
8) mgr Wiesława Mitulska, “A student learns better when they know what and why they learn” –
room 113
9) mgr Magdalena Fijak, “Decroly’s method for young learners in
special needs education” – room 114

16:20 – 16:30 Coffee break

16:30 – Workshops in parallel sessions
10) mgr Jola Gradowska, “Assessment for learning in British schools – observations by a Polish teacher” –
room 112
11) mgr Katarzyna Ratkowska, “Break the school routine or eTwinning in a nutshell” –
room 113
17:30 – 18:00 A lecture by mgr Beata Zwierzyńska “When assessment for learning becomes oppressive for students and teachers.” Closing remarks on the conference –
room 112

An interview in a local TV about the initiative