Educating City

Since 2016, Sant Joan d’Alacant is part of the more than 450 educational cities in the world. In 1990, the First International Congress of Educating Cities was held in Barcelona, culminating in the Initial Charter of the Basic Principles for the Promotion of Education in the City. The Charter stresses the importance of education in the development of the city’s inhabitants. Its content has been modified through various congresses, but always on the basis of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948); the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966); the Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989); the World Declaration on Education for All (1990) and the Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity (2001).

The preamble of the Charter stresses that the educating city must have its own personality within the country in which it is integrated, an interdependent identity of the territory to which it belongs. Therefore, the educating city is related to its environment, and must develop parallel to its traditions, paying special attention to the formation, promotion and development of all its inhabitants. That is why on our website, all the cultural, material and intangible heritage that characterizes this municipality is represented.

The Charter is articulated through different chapters, many of which are intimately linked with aspects related to the preservation of the natural, social and cultural landscape. They highlight the importance that the Charter of Educating Cities gives to education policies and awareness of cultural, tourist, environmental and territorial planning resources, subject to landscape values.

As a permanent structure of collaboration between local governments committed to the Charter of Educating Cities, in 1994 the International Association of Educating Cities (AICE) was founded, of which Sant Joan d’Alacant is an active member.

In Sant Joan d’Alacant we work intensively to fulfill the mandates inherent in the recognition of Ciudad Educadora, looking for the elements of our own complex identity, in order to preserve and value it, making new ways of life compatible with our customs and our origins, working to offer an attractive image of our natural, cultural and social environment.

Today, the impressive heritage treasured throughout our history, closely linked to the development of the Huerta de Alicante, is facing serious difficulties as a result of the decline in agricultural activity, together with the high maintenance costs involved in maintaining our assets. Preserving this valuable heritage requires us to implement policies that allow the diversification of our productive fabric, through economic activities compatible with the values of our territory. This challenge must necessarily be accompanied by educational and information policies that help us to raise awareness among our people of the value of their own landscape, material and immaterial, so that education becomes one of the basic pillars for the preservation of our identity signs.

The present website of Turismo Sant Joan is one of the instruments developed by the municipality to value the assets of the municipality, addressing both our potential visitors and our own residents. This not only stimulates an incipient tourism sector, which allows the generation of resources with which to serve our heritage, also meets the disclosure requirements established by the Charter of Educating Cities, by making available to the public an attractive and dynamic compendium of the main idiosyncratic values of Sant Joan d’Alacant.

It is also being done in an important effort to ensure that the growth of our city is presided over by the harmony between the new needs and the perpetuation of the symbols that constitute the references of our past, so that the layout of the urban physical space meets the needs of accessibility, encounter, relationship, play, recreation and a greater approach to nature. In this sense our consistory is gradually developing the instruments of urban planning that allow us to recognize and preserve our singular constructions and our traditional roads. The urban policy of our municipality also serves the conservation and construction of parks and gardens equitably distributed throughout our urban area, providing meeting places and wellness for our neighbors.

Little by little, our city is adapting to the functional diversities of visitors and residents, implementing programs that attend to the different cases of people with disabilities, such as the project  We Move  from the Department of Youth and through  private entities settled in our municipality as APSALucas KochADF Sant JoanAPCA.

The local government is also working to provide the city with spaces, facilities and public services appropriate to the personal, social, moral and cultural development of all our inhabitants, with special attention to children, youth and our elderly. We have for these purposes the House of Culture  of the Cultural Center, headquarters of the Library  y Municipal Archive,  the Municipal Sports Center and the Municipal Center of Major Salvador Gosálbez Alberola, to name a few.

Another imperative of the educating city involves encouraging citizen participation from a critical and co-responsible perspective, providing the necessary information and promoting transversality, guidelines and training activities in ethical and civic values. Our municipality has more than forty associations related to education, health, sport, the elderly, youth, art, literature, cultural heritage, religion, music, festivals, consumer advocacy, trade, dance and a long etc. All these entities give evidence of the intense role of our civil society in the affairs of the city, and in the different public participation programs developed by the consistory.

Sant Joan d’Alacant actively promotes health education. Throughout the year, our city council carries out numerous informative activities promoting healthy living habits and prevention, fundamental tools to preserve health. In addition, our city hosts the University Hospital and the Health Science Campus of Miguel Hernández University.

All this effort is made to guarantee the quality of life of our inhabitants, through balance with the natural and cultural environment, the right to a healthy environment, the right to housing, work, recreation and public transport, among others, so that education becomes the fundamental pillar that promotes respect for our environment, coexistence among our diverse citizens and the progress of our people.