10 SES 02 B, Programmes and Approaches: Cooperation and collaboration
The paper originates in the crossing of orientations asserted in the project of reform of Education in France called ‘Law n ° 2013-595 of 8 July 2013 of Orientation and Programming for the Reestablishment of the School of the Republic’ with research and teaching activities conducted in an initial training programme for future teachers.
Within the text of law, the term ‘cooperation’ appears not fewer than 30 times, some sentences showing the importance of the notion connected with the project to ‘reestablish the School of the Republic’. For instance, in the first section, ‘The principles of Education’, the legislator indicates that ‘through its organisation and methods, as well as by the training of the teachers who teach it, the Public Service of Education encourages cooperation between pupils’.
The pedagogical practices presented in the paper began with a Teacher Training Seminar co-organised in the 1990s at the ‘Pädagogische Hoschule’ in Karlsruhe University, Germany. Methods used in the seminar were inspired by the school correspondence (Freinet, 1926) and the institutional pedagogy (Vasquez & Oury, 1967). Since 2011, new practices, also based on cooperation, have been set up, involving fourteen groups of students from Paris 8 and Cergy-Pontoise universities. Groups of future teachers of elementary school were exchanging situation analysis and reflexions with groups of future education advisors (some undergraduate degree students were also involved). Most of the students were in a part-time professional situation, through internships during their training. Cooperative methods and devices have been enriched by more recent works (Imbert, 2005, Laffitte, 2006) and by theoretical elements coming from the ‘psychoanalytically oriented approach in the field of education’ (Blanchard-Laville, Chaussecourte, Hatchuel, Pechberty, 2005).
The research conducted in relation with the training focuses on the effects of the cooperative practices on the evolution of the subjective position of young teachers in the phase of their professional debut. The main concepts at stake, based on the Freudian notion of transference relationship (1937), are the maternal reverie (Bion, 1962), the affect (Green, 2002) and the resonance phenomena (Blanchard-Laville, 2013). Since 2014, the research is influenced by working sessions organised in a network involving five staff of European researchers (Erasmus+ partnership: Institute of Education, London; Università di Milano Biccoca; Université du Luxembourg; Université Paris 8; Université Paris Nanterre). The paper emphasises on how the experience made through the cooperative devices modifies ‘the subjective appropriation of the professional position’.
More recently, new developments emerged, both in training and research. After a particular experience lived in a seminar made in close proximity (in time and geographically) with the Paris attacks in November 2015, two new themes appeared: the importance of the use of narration (Benjamin, 1936) and the fact that the subjective position of who leads the seminar is also strongly affected by the cooperative devices put in use.
The paper will put emphasis on those two dimensions and will end on a reflexion about what appears to be some kind of a paradoxical situation. If, as previously mentioned, the Official texts emphasize the interest of the cooperation, teachers in their professional debuts tend to receive that prescription as an injunction hard to put in practice. Practices of cooperation seem to be much more within reach when they have been experienced through devices working as diffracted mediations (Geffard, 2015). In another vein, academics involved in such practices and research may participate to working sessions with authorities in charge of the evolution of school orientations. A work which could be marked by ambivalence in its results, because potentially carrying, through the texts produced, the dimension of the injunction causing difficulties for the teachers in training.
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