MenSI School Blog

Mentoring - investment in all participants of the educational process

Six countries are involved in the MenSI project, one of which is Croatia. Our school, Trilj Elementary School, is mentored by the Petar Zrinski Elementary School cluster from Čabar, Croatia. This project uses the method of teaching school-to-school, which involves active cooperation between two or more institutions in order to promote the professional development of teachers, provide benefits to pupils and improve the work of the school in general.

The reason we applied for the project was to raise awareness of the need to develop digital skills and competencies at the school level.

Distance learning during the pandemic COVID -19 showed that the teachers had an insufficient level of digital competencies, and it became evident that there was a need for further training, development of skills and competencies, i.e. there was a need to support teachers' professional development. The modest knowledge and skills of our pupils can be seen as a consequence of the insecurity of teachers in using ICT in the classroom. As a result of this, our pupils are in a disadvantaged position because possible/realistic goals have not been set for them. Therefore, it is not possible to develop their digital skills and competencies.

By participating in the MenSI project, we have decided to change the paradigm of teaching in the digital environment at all age levels from classroom teaching to subject teaching.

At the meeting of the Teachers' Council in October 2021, I (Ivana Marić Zerdun) as the school coordinator, introduced the members of the school to the details and implementation of the project.

During the first year of mentoring, the following activities were carried out:

  • self-evaluation with the SELFIE tool,
  • online meetings,
  • webinars with workshops,
  • visiting online lectures.

The results of the SELFIE questionnaire showed the following:


  • infrastructure and equipment
  • support and resources
  • digital competencies of pupils
  • continuous professional development


  • continuous professional development
  • management
  • digital competencies of pupils
  • support and resources
  • cooperation and networking
  • implementation in teaching


  • implementation in teaching
  • cooperation and networking
  • grading methodology practice

Through webinars (workshops and meetings), school-to-school mentoring at "Petar Zrinski" Elementary School has helped us create digital situations where knowledge is functional and meaningful for pupils.

We see the school-to-school mentoring, through the sharing and exchange of best practices with concrete examples, as an opportunity for our progress in terms of introducing changes and overcoming the weaknesses of the Trilj Elementary School.

We believe that we will achieve faster and more interesting visualization with the training in the use of computer software and modelling digitally supported innovations and creating resources for open digital content. In this way, we want to provide equal opportunities for all our pupils, regardless of their economic status.

I believe that the lessons learned in this project will help us create a digital school strategy, which we currently do not have.

Author: Ivana Marić Zerdun, Biology and Chemistry Teacher, Trilj Elementary School, Croatia