The HAND: Empowering Teachers project hypothesizes that the professional development programme to empower teachers in an innovative holistic model approach (a whole-school-whole-year support system) will lead to an improvement of teachers’ SEDA competencies.
Teachers’ social and emotional competencies, including (a) self-awareness, (b) self-regulation, (c) social awareness, (d) relationship skills, (e) responsible decision-making, together with (f) relational competence and (g) diversity awareness (CASEL, 2013; Kozina et al, 2020), are demonstrated as crucial forward-looking competencies for empowering teachers to better navigate their career, create effective learning and teaching environments and a positive school climate, also by effectively working in cross-disciplinary teams. At the same time, these competencies support the development of the same competencies in students in classrooms.
The HAND: Empowering Teachers project recognises particularly the following pressing problems and needs in the teaching profession across the EU, as evidenced in EU reports and international research:
(1) Teaching in a changing and diverse setting;
(2) Promotion of teacher collaboration;
(3) Supporting teachers’ careers;
(4) Participation, focus and efficiency of continuing professional development;
(5) Addressing the needs identified by the teachers;
(6) Supporting teachers social and emotional competencies.