PortaleRagazzi.it (www.portaleragazzi.it) is a project concerned with young people and new technologies sponsored by the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze. But that’s not all. Launched in the 2006-7 school year, it’s also a process conceived to stimulate dialogue between young people, schools and institutions through the languages of web 2.0. The initiative is designed to meet the major need felt by both families and schools for education and training in the correct and informed use of the new technologies and internet. The institutions are aware of this new challenge, but in Italy there is still a long way to go. The recent National Digital School Plan is intended to bring the Italian school system into line with the average of other European countries, bridging the gap which was highlighted by the latest OECD analysis, especially in terms of infrastructures and equipment. The path towards innovation is mapped out, but there is still a very large digital divide at both generational and territorial level.
PortaleRagazzi.it is conceived to foster safe and aware use of the web and knowledge of the new digital technologies employed. Within the overarching project, it consists of a set of sub-projects. Every year the initiative supports around 20 projects in elementary and middle schools in the Municipality of Florence using a range of multimedia tools (websites, blogs and communities) as well as educational workshops.