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Italy: Stress-Free Schools conference draws Milan officials' praise for Consciousness-Based Education
by Global Good News staff writer
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5 February 2014
A recent conference in Milan, Italy, focused on the effectiveness of Consciousness-Based Education, including the practice of Transcendental Meditation, in creating 'Stress-Free Schools'—Scuola Senza Stress—in the community.
The conference, presented by the David Lynch Foundation, was held in the dignified Provincial Palace in Milan. The provincial president, Guido Podestà, introduced the event by expressing his appreciation for the idea of including Transcendental Meditation in schools. He emphasized that students should have something that helps create awareness of themselves and their own inner life.
Opening remarks and a greeting were given by Ms Marina Lazzati, the Assessora of educational instruction in Milan, who is a member of the executive body that is responsible for education in the province.
Two short videos were shown portraying successful Consciousness-Based Education projects, one in the United States and one in South America.
Mr Roberto Baitelli, the conference organizer, interviewed renowned filmmaker David Lynch, founder of the David Lynch Foundation. Mr Baitelli commented recently that Mr Lynch 'masterfully' brought out the benefits of stress-free schools for both students and teachers, including the increased coherence created in society by students who practise Transcendental Meditation and the advanced Transcendental Meditation Sidhi Programme.
Another main speaker was Dr Ashley Deans, a long-time expert in the field of Consciousness-Based Education who for many years was Executive Director of the award-winning Maharishi School of the Age of Enlightenment in Fairfield, Iowa, USA. Dr Deans, author of A Record of Excellence: The Remarkable Success of Maharishi School of the Age of Enlightenment, gave a 20 minute presentation on Consciousness-Based Education.
Ms Giovanna Finocchiaro, a schoolteacher in Sicily and the pioneer of Stress-Free Schools in Italy, spoke on the benefits that have accrued in her school, Istituto Edmondo De Amicis, and community since the implementation of the Consciousness-Based Education curriculum.
A local psychologist and psychotherapist, Rossano Maset, who also practices Transcendental Meditation, discussed the relationship between stress, ADHD, learning difficulties, autism and Transcendental Meditation.
Dr Derek Cassells, Head of Maharishi Free School in Lancashire, England, addressed the conference, describing the school's successes over more than 25 years of offering Consciousness-Based Education. In 2011 the school was among the first group of schools in the UK to be designated as government-supported Free Schools.
On the website of the provincial president an article was posted reporting favourably about Transcendental Meditation and Consciousness-Based Education, and the need for meditation in the schools. The heading of the article reads: 'Stress free schools, Podestà: Meditation appears to be a valuable tool to help our kids overcome anxiety and stress.'
One day after the conference local business leaders met to discuss the conference and potential followup plans.
Copyright © 2014 Global Good News Service
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