The IES Mar de Alborán is a Secondary Comprehensive and Vocational State School located in Estepona, Málaga. Estepona is a town on the western Costa del Sol with a population of almost 70.000 inhabitants and its main economic activities are tourism, commerce and fishing. The school has excellent relations with the local and regional authorities as well as with companies, since this comprehensive school was originaly a VET college.
The secondary school offers a full range of studies from lower and middle secondary education to higher secondary school, including official courses for adults in life-long learning programmes. The VET school comprises three areas of study: Electronics, Business Management and Finance, and IT. Of the total 1330 students enrolled in the school at present, the technical studies comprise a 2 year academic technical course (Bachillerato Tecnológico), with 48 students enrolled and 18 teachers, 2000hr-VET courses in Telecomunications lnstallations and Microcomputer Systems and Networks, with 79 students enrolled and 9 teachers and a HVET IT course on Development of Web Applications, with 33 students and 9 teachers. In addition the school is integrated into the Cisco Networking Academy.
Since 2012 the management team has set amongst its objectives to incorporate the school into European programmes and educational projects. The school aims, by participating in European programmes such as Erasmus+, to improve the overall education and professional training of the students and staff with European collaborative experiences. The main objective is to promote both student and teacher participation in European programes, in order to raise attainment levels and the relevance of their VET courses in the local and European labour market. The school has an Erasmus Charter. The school has experience in organising student placements in the EU with their Higher Vocational Courses and have previously organised student mobilities for their HVET with funding from their regional government (Junta de Andalucía).
Since 2015 there is collaboration with Wijkmanska gymnasiet.
The collaboration has already led to student and teacher visits, and also the hosting of students for company placements in an ongoing Erasmus+ KA1 project. IES Mar de Alborán is applying for a KAI project for 2016-2018 and the schools are planned to have mutual exchanges.
Relevant for this project IES Mar de Alborán is specialised in courses in electronics, video-camera technology, control systems, automation, security systems, computer net-works, web design and fiber optics. All of these courses will be involved in the design and manufacture of Quadcopters, and so will other more general subjects. The local project leader will be the Head of the IT department. She is also part of the school management and will therefore be able to implement the project trials and results in all departments of the school.
In the Erasmus Charter, the school board also set up the Commission of European Projects and Educational Mobility, which is constituted by the headmaster, the deputy headmaster, the European Projects Coordinator, two foreign language teachers, two teachers from the VET Departments, and one representative of the Parent’s Association. This board will be used as a steering group for the project.
The school has extensive experience in new technologies and most of the staff implied in this project are focused full time in ICT signatures. It currently has VET students of microcomputer systems and local networks and HVET students of web application design. These skills will cover most of the project’s needs. All the teachers of the ICT department will be involved in this project, all of them have a strong background in computer science.