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(14 March 2013) - The best school twinning projects of the year will be honoured at the 2013 eTwinning Awards in Lisbon today.

This year's top prize is awarded to the 'Rainbow Village' project which brought together 12-15-year-olds in France, Greece, Romania, the UK, Turkey, Italy, Slovakia and Poland. The pupils created a virtual post-Armageddon world and explored themes such as survival, conservation and citizenship.

The eTwinning network is a virtual classroom in which pupils and teachers from 100 000 schools in 33 European countries take part in interactive projects via the internet. Nine prizes are awarded for 2013.

The eTwinning scheme is part of the EU's Comenius programme and receives around €10 million in funding each year. It does not finance individual projects but offers tools and support to teachers and pupils such as the eTwinning portal and seminars for teachers.

As part of the new Erasmus for All programme which will start in 2014, the Commission has proposed to develop eTwinning as a platform for all schools that wish to co-operate across borders with EU support.

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