Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education

A microproject by Ba Futuru / For the Future
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Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education
Empower Children in Timor-Leste through Education

Thank you! Your contribution supported Ba Futuru's purchase of a new 4-wheel drive vehicle enabling us to access remote schools in order to implement our Inspiring Young Learners through Quality Education project. This meant much needed teacher training and mentoring could be carried out to the benefit thousands of students. Having the vehicle means we can now continue our work across all 13 municipalities of Timor-Leste to inspire young learners, empower women, protect children and prevent violence.

We will be paying off the remaining costs of the vehicle over the next year with project contributions and support from donors like you! Please consider supporting Ba Futuru’s work further this holiday season with e-holiday cards at:

https://www.globalgiving.org/donate/10868/ba-futuru-for-the-future/

These are some of the great things the project has achieved:

After the training we undertook classroom observations and we noticed positive changes, such as, all of teachers couldset up clear expectations about lesson content and classroom behaviour, they could do participatory activities (individual and group) such as exploring ideas, playing games and doing energizers, formulating comprehension questions and praising their students for good work and/or good behaviour. These may seem small changes but are big strides forward in classroom management away from rote learning and corporal discipline.

Some quotations from the teachers and students involved:

“I found it very interesting to learn about how to creative a friendly classroom environment, for example through the use of lesson planning and classroom management. I would like to suggest to Ba Futuru prolongs their cooperation with our school.”

“I always use violence in my class, for example shouting, slapping and expelling students from the class. I use violence because some students are very naughty, some are my age, and some even older than me. But through this training I learned how to speak softly.”

“The teacher mentoring helped me a lot. Sometimes previously I didn’t prepare my lesson plan well before I went to teach.  But Ba Futuru helped me to understand how to develop a good lesson plan, and how to incorporate various methods into my teaching so all students participate actively. To give an example: I just used the mini whiteboard activity to ask my students questions and I saw that the students got very excited about it. After the class they asked me to continue using this method.”

“After the teachers participated in the teacher training, we saw that there were some changes in their way of teaching. They started to do discussions in class, they do games and revisions of the previous lesson before they start teaching. But some teachers still use old methods, for example they just ask the students to copy from the board. I still see teachers who come and teach without a lesson plan and during the lesson they don’t pay attention to the students. We hope the teachers who already participated in the teacher training can implement the methods they’ve learned and become a good example for the other teachers.”

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Due to decades of violent conflict and occupation, the resulting widespread poverty, and a fractured administrative history, high schools in Timor-Leste face many problems and offer limited educational opportunities for young people. There has been deficient implementation of technical education and a lack of quality training for teachers. Additionally, there are high levels of violence in high schools and a lack of understanding of children’s right to live free from violence, which, together with Timor-Leste’s history of conflict, creates cycles of violence that are hard to break in adulthood. Quality education is essential for the country’s future. According to the World Bank the biggest development challenge facing Timor-Leste over the next decade is to ensure that the young population is educated, healthy and productively employed.

Through the three years of teacher mentoring and training with the High Schools Transformation Project (HSTP), Ba Futuru witnessed significant results. While many obstacles remain, Ba Futuru is committed to work hard in order to bring about progress and change in Timorese schools. With the generous support from Oaktree, Ba Futuru will continue to improve the Timorese education system through the implementation of a project called “Inspiring Young Learners Through Quality Education” (hereafter referred to as “Quality Education” or “QE”). This project builds on the teacher training modules that were developed during the HSTP and turns them into teacher training film episodes that will be shared with, and piloted in, schools as well as distributed via the government and other stakeholders across Timor-Leste.

 1) Summary of the 5th Quarter

In the fifth quarter of the project, the Quality Education team organized the QE film launch and signed an agreement with the Ministry of Education supporting project implementation. Moreover, the QE team conducted outreach in the Manatuto municipality and held meetings with the Municipality Education Director and the school directors from the Kay Rala Secondary School and the Primeira Dama Secondary School. The QE team presented the Quality Education Project’s goals and activities. An agreement letter was signed between Ba Futuru and each school to formalize their cooperation. Thereafter, the QE team established School Management Committees (SMC) with both schools and delivered the first workshop on governance, leadership and code of conduct to the SMC members. The first teacher training on session 1 to 4 took place at Primeira Dama Secondary School.

 Key trainings and events in the fifth quarter of the project year included the following:

Component 1: Creation of a teacher trainer toolkit with educational films on each episode

  • April – May 11: Consultation with the Ministry of Education about the QE film launch
  • May 6: Film testing in 12 Novembru Secondary School to get teachers’ feedback on each episode
  • May 12: QE film launch and signing of the agreement between Ba Futuru and the Ministry of Education

Component 2: Outreach and Baseline Survey

  • April 5: Outreach to the secondary schools Kay Rala and Primeira Dama in Manatuto and meetings with the directors Mr Jacinto Soares da Silva and Mr Timotio Gusmão to talk about the QE program
  • April 24: Conducted baseline survey at the Kay Rala school: interviewed the director, distributed questionnaires to the teachers and students, gave the teachers a short briefing on the QE program, signed the agreement letter between Ba Futuru and Kay Rala Secondary School
  • April 25: Conducted baseline survey at the Primeira Dama school: interviewed the director, interviewed the parent representative, distributed questionnaires to the teachers and students, gave a short briefing on the QE program to the teachers and community leaders, signed the agreement letter

Component 3: Governance and Leadership workshop for School Management Committee members

  • May 29: Established School Management Committee (SMC) at Primeira Dama school and delivered first workshop on governance, leadership and code of conduct  to the SMC members
  • May 30: Established School Management Committee (SMC) at Kay Rala school and delivered first workshop on governance, leadership and code of conduct to the SMC member
  • June 21: First SMC meeting at Kay Rala school
  • June 24: First SMC meeting at Primeira Dama school

Component 4: Teacher Training for 25 teachers/administrators in each of the 4 schools – 8-halfday-workshops 

  • June 22-24: Provided the first teacher training on session 1 to 4 for 15 teachers at the Primeira-Dama school. (16 teachers came on the first day but one teacher got sick and could not complete the training.)

On May 6th, the QE team showed the Participatory Education Film (episode one to eight) to 22 teachers (F: 2, M: 20) in 12 Novembru Secondary School. After each episode the QE team engaged the teachers in a discussion about the film content and the information provided. The teachers said that the content of the film was easy to understand and made some suggestions.  Overall, the teachers enjoyed the episodes and suggested to distribute the film to all schools in the area so that the teachers there can also benefit from it.

The pre-/post-surveys (before and after watching the films) showed the following results:

-        In the pre-evaluation 73% of the teachers said that they knew what participatory teaching methods are but only 27% could give a definition. In the post-evaluation all of the teachers said that they knew what participatory teaching method are and 86% of them could give a definition.

-        In the pre-evaluation 77% of the teachers said that they knew how to manage the classroom in a positive way but only 9% of them could give a concrete example. In the post-evaluation 95% of the teachers said that they knew how to manage the classroom in a positive way and 68% of them could give a concrete example.

-       In the pre-evaluation 59% of the teachers said that using group work during the teaching process would benefit the students. In the post-evaluation 91% of the teachers said that using group work during the teaching process would benefit the students. 

Feedback given anonymously in the surveys:

-        All of the teachers said that the film provided detailed information and was easy to understand and that the methods shown could be applied in the Timorese context

-        All of the teachers also said that their colleagues from other schools would like the film as well

-        All of the teachers said that the film could be used as a guideline for teachers

 The school director at Primeira Dama secondary school said: “I feel very lucky because I can meet people like you. This is the first time my school gets the opportunity to learn about teaching methods. I realize that my teachers need support to make their teaching more fun and participatory. As a teacher you should not only sit in your seat and ask one student to write on the board and the other students to copy.”


Later on in the conversation he said: “Ba Futuru is like a doctor for us, and I believe that we will get the right medicine. This training is something that we have been looking for for long time, finally we can get it.” 

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Organization Information

Ba Futuru / For the Future

Location: Dili - East Timor
Website:
Project Leader:
Sierra James
Dili, Dili East Timor

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