Age-appropriate use of digital technologies: Petition launched by the Eliant network and the Alliance for Humane Education
The European Alliance of Initiatives for Applied Anthroposophy (Eliant) advocates cultural diversity and choice in Europe. Its petition for an age-appropriate use of digital technology ‘For a Right to Screen-free Day Care Centres, Kindergartens and Primary Schools’ will run until the end of the year. Eliant has recently become a partner of the World Goetheanum Association.
Eliant sees the need for action wherever a threat to choice – and therefore to chances for development – occurs as a result of official rules and regulations. In view of the Corona-induced pressure to organize life and work digitally, particularly in education, it is Eliant‘s central concern to advocate an age-appropriate use of digital technologies.
As early as 2016/2017 the Association of Waldorf Kindergartens in Germany launched a petition, supported by the neuroscientist Manfred Spitzer, for screen-free day care centres and kindergartens. Now Eliant is circulating the Europe-wide petition ‘For a Right to Screen-free Day Care Centres, Kindergartens and Primary Schools’. “Kindergartens in Sweden have lost the right to be screen-free in August 2020,” says Michaela Glöckler from Eliant. She feels encouraged by the speech given in Brussels in 2017 by Martine Reichert, the then EU Commission‘s Director General for Education. Reichert encouraged the Congress members to stand up for alternatives in education.
Initiated by Eliant, the book ‘Growing Up Healthy in a World of Digital Media’ has therefore been translated by members of the Alliance for Humane Education, so far into ten languages (including Arabic, English and Korean). Its demand for an age-appropriate digital education is supported by scientific research.
“The broader the support, the more political weight this initiative will have, which is why it aims for 100 000 signatures by the end of 2020,” Michaela Glöckler explains. Once the petition runs out, Eliant will continue to advocate a citizens‘ movement for humane education.
(1983 characters/SJ; translation by Margot M. Saar)
Alliance for Humane Education: www.aufwach-s-en.de