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A Cluster Training Approach

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Presentation on theme: "A Cluster Training Approach"— Presentation transcript:

1 A Cluster Training Approach
In-service teacher training in Ethiopia

2 Educational Challenges
A nearly 40% increase in Gross Enrollment Rate over the seven-year period of the Basic Education Strategic Overhaul (BESO I) Large (enormous) class sizes in early primary grades students Up to 60% drop-out rates in some schools between grades 1 & 2. Teachers who are overwhelmingly using the “chalk and talk” methodology

3 Improving Teacher Quality
BESO II - USAID/Ethiopia’s Basic Education Strategic Objective focuses on improving The quality and equity of primary education. Teacher education -- through improved pre-service and in-service training is a critical component of BESO (Intermediate Result 1)

4 Balancing Pre-Service/In-Service
Pre-service is critical but will impact a minority of the teaching force In-service is critical to improving educational quality School administrators and other educational management levels need to be engaged

5 Improving Teacher Education
123,000 public primary school teachers in Ethiopia 85% rural/agrarian - dependent on subsistence agriculture A country that is roughly twice the size of Texas or 1.1 million sq km 13.2 million children of primary school age

6 BESO I - Piloting of Clusters
Piloting began in the last two years of BESO I -- 14,200 teachers reached in 2001/2 year Provided resource materials and training kits for two regions of Ethiopia - Tigray and the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Region (SNNPR) Models “localized” within each region by Regional Education Bureaus (REBs) SNNPR decided to use a “mobile book box” model, which contained a selection of reference books and teacher guides for English, mathematics, and science. These boxes were circulated amongt the schools, with no school holding the materials for more than two weeks a a time.

7 The BESO II Cluster System
BESO now nation-wide -- active in 8 geographic regions, and 3 administrative zones. Cluster model important than ever to reach large numbers of teachers using a cost-effective approach Goal in in-service training is to reach about 58,000 serving teachers by the end of the SO in 2007, to improve teaching quality, using a cascade or ToT model

8 The Goals of Cluster Training
Assist teachers implement new curricula and policies Encourage experience-sharing, collaborative problem-solving, and peer teaching; Provide a forum and venue where teachers can work together on skills development through self-instructional kits Engage other levels of educational management

9 The Mechanics… The “central” cluster school -- called the Cluster Resource Center (CRC) -- is selected with REBS based on set criteria, which include: Complete primary school (Grades 1-8) Central location Appropriate facilities to accommodate teachers from up to seven “satellite” schools Strong, qualified, and enthusiastic teachers Good resource materials (library, pedagogical center, etc.) - supplemented by USAID USAID provides additional materials, such as reference books, materials for instructional aid preparation, duplicating machines, and typewrites.

10 CRC Coordinating Committee
Composed of all schools’ directors, key teachers, and woreda education officers. plans CRC activities identifies specific training needs (in collaboration with teachers) develops strategies to improve community engagement, girls enrollment, and address other educational challenges works to constantly improve functioning of cluster

11 Key Teacher Serves as “in-house” trainer in each school
Has a reduced teaching load Provides training and support to fellow teachers Conducts classroom obervations and provides “coaching” Organizes discussions on specific educational topics to improve teacher skills

12 Tier 1 (TOT) training… School directors, key teachers, and woreda education officers are trained by staff from AED, the REBs, and Teacher Education Institutes. Training methodologies are learner-centered, participatory, and focused on group activities so that these approaches are “modeled” in their own training.

13 Cluster Training Topics
Using interactive learning approaches Applying continuous assessment Preparation and use of teaching aids Self-contained classroom methodologies Integrated lesson plans Encouraging girls’ classroom participation

14 Self-Instructional Kits
A six-module instructional kit, developed by AED, is distributed to each cluster school Focuses on: active learning methodologies (and how to implement them in a large class setting) using continuous assessment to enhance learning basic concepts of remediation gender issues on the classroom curriculum integration

15 Achievements/Results
Government has adopted model as policy Increased use of learner-centered teaching approaches, active-learning and increased student engagement Greater collegiality and joint problem-solving amongst teachers Improved girls’ retention School directors/WEOs more engaged/skills improved Government has released guidelines on continuous professional development of teachers using the cluster model. School directors were also coached on school leadership and management WEOs also were coached on school supervision as part of this process

16 Challenges Incentives … not connected to certification or improved chances for promotion Per diem Sustainability -- regional governments need to create matching budget Capacity of some woreda education offices is rather weak

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