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"150th Past, Present and Future of Teacher Education in Ticino" this was the title of the celebration event organized to mark this important anniversary. Along with other initiatives that took place throughout the year, this evening of celebration was an opportunity to learn more about and discuss the history, present and future of teacher education in our canton and beyond.
The evening was introduced by SUPSI General Director Franco Gervasoni, who in his welcoming remarks emphasized that "retracing the history of teacher education was a journey through time that allowed us to rediscover the value of the qualified work of many distinguished predecessors. People who helped shape the culture of the Canton of Ticino, accompanying its emancipation and modernization through the decades, thanks to their role in the training of and for teachers."
Since its integration into SUPSI in 2009, there have been 2119 DFA/ASP graduates "who have entered Ticino's schools of all levels with competence, motivation and passion."
The great motivation of the future teachers also emerged from an episode of everyday school life evoked by the Director of the Department of Education and Learning / University of Teacher Education Alberto Piatti to describe the value of these 150 years of history: "it was a special occasion, because for the first time I was able to observe live the new model of professional practice, based on the concept of professional learning communities. In this model of practice, teachers-in-training design lessons collaboratively, observe themselves and reflect together, with the help of the professional practice teacher, on how to improve their teaching. The excitement that was felt allowed me to understand what this anniversary means to me: looking at 150 years of teacher education in Ticino is like contemplating the universe; it is the largest object we can look at, yet to fully enjoy it, you need to observe it through a telescope. And the bigger it gets, the more we discover new wonders."
State Councillor Marina Carobbio Guscetti recalled some interesting historical anecdotes related to the governmental Message and the Grand Council debate that led to the birth of the then Scuola Magistrale in 1873, emphasizing the importance of the training and role of teachers and teachers for Ticino's schools, then as now.
Concluding the greetings was Locarno Mayor Alain Scherrer, who said, "There is no future without education. A community develops by growing through research beyond the boundaries it already knows, through understanding feelings, through observation of the world; by expressing new ideas, critical thoughts, innovative keys to interpretation. The school, faculty and lecturers have been and are drivers of this growth."
More than 300 people attended the event, many of them with a past within the historic walls of the former Magistral School of Locarno. Different stories and life paths united by a connection to teacher education in Ticino. A further confirmation of the public relevance of this institution, founded in 1873 under the name Scuola normale in the former seminary of Pollegio.
At the end of the welcome speeches, the public participated in the 17 activities set up in the spaces of the former convent of San Francesco to discover the past, present and future of teacher education in Ticino, being able to deepen or discover the profound changes experienced in a century and a half in the world of schooling, pedagogy, didactics and the history of the Canton.