The Higher Council for Media Literacy is a media education body set up by Wallonia-Brussels Federation parliamentary decree in 2008.
Its main missions are to promote media literacy and foster an exchange of information and cooperation between all the players and organisations involved in media literacy. Be it teaching, young people, continuing education, research or administrative bodies, the Council brings them together and coordinates a lifelong media education policy.
This involves encouraging and linking up initiatives, activities, experiences, educational tools, research, etc., with the aim of promoting media literacy.
Today, the CSEM has 100 full members or deputy members from sectors as varied as formal and non-formal education, the media, universities and colleges, journalism, politics, the unions, parents’ associations, youth centres, etc. This represents an unprecedented wealth enabling targeted initiatives to be designed with a clear desire to foster the development of critical thinking and distance from media products, whether as a reader, producer or user of media.
The CSEM carries out a number of activities. Each year it issues a call for school projects on a given topic that promotes the development of media literacy in primary and secondary classes. The CSEM also coordinates various schemes subsidised by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation in partnership with the public and private sectors, such as ‘Journalists in the Classroom’, ‘Opening up my Everyday Life’ and ‘Widescreen on the Blackboard’, with the support of its three media literacy resource centres, the Liège Audiovisual Centre, the Wallonia Brussels Federation Self-study Centre and Média Animation asbl.
These centres of expertise also assist with the production of tools for a variety of school and non-school educational target audiences: the educational sectors dealing with written press, cinema and network media literacy, critical education with regard to advertising, etc. In 2015, the CSEM defined media education competences and illustrated those competences with concrete examples enabling implementation in and out of school.
Finally, the CSEM is actively involved in European and international projects relating to media education. In 2010 the Council held a two-day conference resulting in the drafting of the Brussels Declaration, which contains a number of recommendations for action to promote and improve the standard of media literacy in Belgium and the other member countries. From this perspective the CSEM naturally has a part to play in the development of the B-BICO Consortium.
Lastly, the Higher Council is also actively involved in combating withdrawal by developing initiatives aimed at promoting citizenship and getting along together. It also works actively to fight harassment, specifically cyberbullying.
For more information feel free to visit the CSEM website: http://www.csem.be
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