Frequently Asked Questions
TADA & WEEKEND SCHOOL EDUCATION
What is the origin of weekend school education?
Heleen Terwijn is a Dutch psychologist who established ‘IMC Weekendschool’ in 1998. Terwijn discovered, during her university research on motivation, that expectations for the future of pupils in primary schools in difficult Amsterdam neighborhoods were very low. She conceptualized an effective approach: voluntary, additional motivational and society-oriented education on Sundays for pupils between 10 and 14 years old.
Sofie Foets was introduced to the concept of IMC Weekendschool during a conference in the European Parliament, where Heleen Terwijn gave a speech on ‘best practices in Europe as regards informal education for disadvantaged youngsters’. Being a child of entrepreneurs, an idealist and a lover of Brussels, Sofie decided in 2012 to launch the Brussels equivalent of IMC Weekendschool: ToekomstATELIERdelAvenir. TADA was launched in Sint-Joost-ten-Node since this is municipality was the poorest, most densely populated and smallest municipality of Brussels (with large ratios of early school dropout and youth unemployment).
Who are the pupils of TADA?
TADA exists for children issued from underprivileged neighborhoods in Brussels who go to school in the neighborhood of the schools where the activities take place. Get more info by contacting email@example.com.
Each year in September, TADA presents its activity to all the pupils of all the fifth year classes of the participating schools. The pupils decide themselves, in dialogue with their parents, whether or not they would like to participate in the TADA program.
Since 2014-2015, the demand for a place at TADA has become much greater than the offer. In order to ensure that full advantage is taken of limited places, TADA conducts a survey, before selecting the children by lottery, during the invitation rounds in the schools in order to assess:
- The children’s desire to participate in TADA
- The children’s access to other empowering, extracurricular activities (such as music or coding lessons)
- The general, socioeconomic familial background of the children
- The level of education and employment of the parents or guardians.
The children’s school results are not taken into account.
In order to get to know its pupils (and future pupils) better, TADA regularly organizes surveys. The class coordinators visit the children and their parents yearly at home. For more information you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who are the guest lecturers at TADA?
The guest lecturers change every week. They are all people who are passionate about their job and who want to share their passion with the TADA kids. Each group is visited weekly by, on average, four guest lecturers. This brings their total to more than 2000 on a yearly basis!
Since its launch, TADA has counted on the enthusiastic collaboration of a very diverse group of guest lecturers: younger and older, of Belgian or other origin, with just a little or lots of experience, well known media personalities or unknown people. Some of the well-known public personalities that participated with a lot of enthusiasm are Martine Tanghe and Françoise Wallemacq (journalism), Emir Kir, Pascal Smet, Hilde Crevits and Guy Verhofstadt (politics), and Adil El Arbi (cinema).
What is the difference between TADA and the traditional educational system?
TADA is complementary to the traditional educational system. All TADA pupils go to a traditional school during the week. TADA offers ‘a helping hand’ to schools and parents in disadvantaged neighborhoods. At school, children mostly learn from books; they develop skills like reading, writing, calculating. TADA does something different. At TADA children discover society and themselves by learning about subjects such as law, medicine and entrepreneurship ‘for kids’. Each week other guest lecturers are present in the classroom: people who are passionate about their job and who want to share their passion with the children by showing them what it is like to work in the field discussed that week.
Does TADA only offer a view on academic subjects and arts?
No, TADA offers a mix of scientific, societal, technical and creative courses. In each course TADA presents the essential elements of a field and informs the TADA kids about a variety of professions (and their job possibilities) related to that field. At the same time, the basic professional attitude and skills linked to those professions are discussed as well.
The goal is to show the TADA kids what goes on in the world, to widen their critical mindset and to help them discover their own talents and interests by means of practical workshops. Each profession requires different skills, which are taught implicitly. Each class is a combination of knowledge and life skills.
For example: during the series of classes on law, they meet lawyers, judges, public prosecutors, clerks of court, prison guards and policemen and -women. In these classes they get to know Belgian society and its judicial system and they also learn to present to an audience, to argue, and to think and act in a nuanced way.
UNIQUE SELLING PROPOSITIONS & VALUES
What makes TADA special?
- TADA is about ‘all-round character education’, with attention to professional perspectives. This differentiates TADA from other organizations that complement traditional education (like homework or language classes) or that stimulate emancipation and integration by means of social-cultural, artistic or sports activities.
- TADA focuses on prevention, by focusing on working with young children. The main TADA target group is children from underprivileged neighborhoods, between the ages of 10 and 14; pupils from the fifth year of primary school through the first year of secondary school. Many organizations focus on supporting vulnerable children of secondary school or young adults. TADA focuses on prevention, whereas many others focus on resolution; by arming its pupils at a very young age against demotivation and loss of perspectives, TADA prevents one of the causes of genuine problems such as learning fatigue, early school dropout, and extreme radicalization or unemployment, in the long term.
- TADA offers intensive, weekly coaching support of three school years and a long term follow-up via an alumni trajectory. This distinguishes TADA from other organizations since most of them work less intensively and only during a short period of time.
- TADA brings people together that would not meet in real life, under ordinary circumstances. TADA allows for a positive, intergenerational and intercultural dialogue in Brussels between diverse worlds, that normally wouldn’t meet: the world of the societally vulnerable child, the world of the professional, the world of school and the world of business…
TADA tears down walls between these worlds and encourages a mutually positive learning process. The intergenerational and intercultural dialogue it inspires, work to encourage integration and cohesion.
What values does TADA promote?
Two worlds meet at TADA: the world of adults, who have accomplished their professional dreams, and the world of children, who at first glance have little chance of doing likewise. The two groups work together, get to know each other, learn from one another. Eyes open, minds open, for both the children and adults participating in TADA.
Independency & neutrality
TADA is neutral toward all fields. The initiative is also independent, from its financial partners as well as from the public sector. TADA’s strategy is defined by its director and board.
TADA is dedicated to embracing diversity and fighting discrimination on all levels. For these reasons TADA attaches great importance to things such as mutual respect, dignity for everyone, tolerance and acceptance of others without prejudices on the basis of whatever grounds.
FINANCES & DUE DILIGENCE
Where can I find the annual account and who does the financial audit?
How can I contribute and are donations tax deductible?
If you want a tax certificate (for gifts of 40 euros or more), you can transfer your donation to the bank account BE10 0000 0000 0404 subject to the structured communication ***017/0080/00006***.
Donations of 40 euros or more made to this account managed by the King Baudoin Foundation give rise to a tax reduction of 45% on the amount actually paid. You can also chose to give multiple small donations during a certain period in time (for example 5 euros every month). If the total amount in one year is 40 euros or more you’ll receive a tax certificate for this amount, deliverd by the King Baudoin Foundation.
If you don’t want a tax certificate you transfer your donation to the TADA bank account BE05 0017 4290 3575. We would like to receive your name, postal and email address to keep you informed with our annual reports and newsletters.
Please take note that TADA can’t offer you a tax certificate for donations made with PayPal.
Of course you can also encourage others to make a donation! Please find more information on this webpage.
Is it possible for my organization to become a partner of TADA?
Of course! TADA exists thanks to its financial and non-financial partners. These are companies and organizations that want to support the functioning of TADA either ad hoc or on a more structural basis. You’ll find information here. Partnerships can be tailored to each organization on request.
For more information on these cooperation possibilities you can contact Sofie Foets, Founder and Managing Director of TADA (email@example.com / 02-781.00.32)
Can I still register my child at TADA?
The places for the school year are filled. However, we do maintain a waiting list for the children who could not be enrolled at this time. Whenever a child leaves the program, it is possible to have another one replace him or her.
Note that for the time being, TADA works exclusively in collaboration with these primary schools: Sint-Joost-aan-Zee, Ten Nude, De Buurt, Klavertje Vier, de Mozaïek, Mariaschool, Le Petit Saint Louis, La Sagesse, Henri Frick, La Nouvelle Ecole, Joseph Declef, Dames de Marie, Tournesol, Arc-en-Ciel, Institut Notre-Dame, Saint-François-Xavier, P8M5 Les Tourterelles, P17 Pierre Lairin, Clair-Soleil & Le Tilleul. Vrije Basisschool Imelda, Windekind, De Windroos, De Klimpaal, Vier Winden Basisschool, Paloke, De Knipoog, Sint-Karel, Sint-Martinus, De Toverfluit, Sint-Albert, Regenboog.
Should my child be present at TADA each and every week?
Although participation in TADA is on a voluntary basis, TADA asks the children to be present each and every week. This is crucial for the group dynamic and the class development; furthermore we want to teach the children a sense of discipline!
If you have a legitimate reason for your child not to be present, we ask you to notify the class coordinator as soon as possible in order to explain the situation. Children who are regularly absent without a good reason, may be asked to leave the program.
Should my child follow the three school year program?
Participating in TADA is a gift but also a commitment. Those who register have to be present for three school years. The program has been developed on the basis of this concept.
Am I welcome at TADA as a parent?
TADA truly values the involvement of the parents of the TADA pupils. At the beginning of each school year, the parents are invited to a parents’ evening. During the school year the parents are invited occasionally to participate as observers to courses or to attend the TADA degree ceremony. Once a year, pedagogical coordinators visit the families at home. On Saturdays (before or after the courses) the coordinators are equally available at school for questions or remarks.
Is my child insured during TADA activities?
TADA works with your children in the most conscientious way. We have arranged third party insurance for all our collaborators and volunteers. We have also personal accident insurance for all the children for the time they spend at TADA. More info with the location managers of your TADA branch.
FOR GUEST LECTURERS
Why does TADA need four guest lecturers for every class?
By inviting on average four guest lecturers for each class, the children can work in small groups. This way we can increase the level of intensity of the courses; this also means that pedagogical expertise is not a necessity for guest lecturers. This intensive and interactive way of working allows for close contact between the guest lecturers and the children, and thus enhances attention span.
Should I be working in the field being discussed to be a guest lecturer?
The TADA guest lecturers all have one characteristic in common: they are passionate about their field! They know their field, which makes it possible for them to explain something in a simple way. They embrace this Einstein quote: If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough. They also really want to pass on their passion for their field to the next generation. Some of them really do have their job in the sector, others are students, retired or ‘intensive amateurs’.
How much time does it take to participate as a guest lecturer?
In order to be able to prepare the classes well, TADA organizes one brainstorming meeting per class. This meeting takes place in the TADA offices. On the class day itself, you are expected to be present at around 9.30 a.m. at the school. A normal class day finishes around 2.45 p.m.
FOR JOB APPLICANTS OR PERMANENT VOLUNTEERS
Are there any vacancies at TADA?
We are always open to spontaneous apllications! For more information, check out our “jobpage” on this website, or do please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can I apply for an internship at TADA?
This depends on your education/training, your qualities and our needs. For more information, please contact us at email@example.com.
Can I be a permanent volunteer at TADA?
Of course! TADA has numerous regular volunteers assisting us on a weekly or monthly basis in very different ways. They provide logistical support and help with homework, among other tasks. Do you want to know more? Have a look here or send an e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org.