Annual report : Improving education through sport in Senegal
The education program out of the school
The deployment of activities in the extracurricular environment followed a series of phases, described below according to the areas of intervention.
The training of the animators, and now of their associative referent, must allow them to master the main objectives of the socio-sportive animation as well as the contents specifically developed in the framework of the program. The particularity of the training provided by PLAY International, in the extracurricular environment, is therefore to work as much on the facilitator's posture as on his conceptual and pedagogical skills.
Since December 2020, 96 animators from 4 intervention zones have benefited from both PLAY International specific training and first aid training.
The animators of the first two zones were also able to benefit from a first aid training, given by the Senegalese Red Cross, in order to secure the activities with the children.
Following the training of the animators, the 25 extra-community partner structures were equipped with a "sports kit", the contents of which were determined following the co-creation workshops. This made it possible to reach an initial target of 1,900 unique children (57% of whom were girls) who have already participated in sports activities, for a total of 13,000 participations.
These figures were achieved thanks to an innovative monitoring and evaluation system that involves all the project's stakeholders. In particular, the associations' referents are trained and equipped to use the various tools used to collect and process the program's quantitative and qualitative data.
During 2021, the EJO program provided two training sessions (Ziguinchor and Bignona) on the identification and referral of cases of child abuse and violence. This component, initiated through the expertise of its partner FAP, has enriched the monitoring process of the activities, since a specialized educator has been seconded to accompany the monitoring agents in the field.
The program in Senegalese schools
The deployment in schools was delayed by the coronavirus crisis, which limited the accessibility of schools during the period. Nevertheless, it has taken on an innovative dimension through the partnership established with the Senegalese national sports committee as part of the co-creation activities.
Following the intervention logic of PLAY International, a first pedagogical assessment was developed in collaboration with the CNOSS. This assessment focused on the pedagogical use of the Olympic values "respect, friendship, excellence". The choice of Olympism was determined by the development strategy of Senegalese school sports, in view of the organization of the Youth Olympic Games in Dakar in 2026. To this purpose, the objective of the co-creation of a specific content to Olympism is to provide the CNOSS and the MEN with tools that can be disseminated to Senegalese elementary schools.
For that matter, PLAY International organized a co-creation time in February 2021, enriching the consultations conducted with CNOSS members with inputs from the operational and institutional partners of the program, especially the deconcentrated services of the national education (CRFPE, IA, IEF). A PLAYDAGOGY kit of 6 sessions was then developed, shared for validation with the stakeholders, and tested in the program's partner schools.
The identification of partner schools had to respond to a strong partnership logic, particularly following the signature of the framework agreement with the Ministry of National Education. PLAY International wanted to involve the decentralized services, particularly the IEF (departmental structure), in the selection and mobilization of partner schools. In each IEF, an EJO focal point acts as a relay within the services, to ensure the follow-up of the activities and the relations with the operational partners.
The identification of the schools was based on shared criteria, with the proximity of the schools to the areas of intervention in the out-of-school sector being the first. Indeed, the EJO program aims to create pedagogical bridges between all the education professionals who are members. Teachers and facilitators have a common mission, and it seems natural to be able to promote this relationship, which favors the identification of children in academic or educational failure, but also the exchange of good pedagogical practices in relation to socio-sportive activities. The second criterion, this time belonging to the deconcentrated service, was the choice of dynamic establishments with motivated and available teaching teams. The last criterion was the availability of sufficient space to ensure the implementation of sports game sessions, a sine qua non condition for the deployment of activities.
As a result, 29 schools from 3 different IEFs were identified to participate in the program, for a total of 65 teachers.
Teacher training was a major step in the implementation of the EJO program in Senegal. Indeed, active pedagogy remains difficult to grasp in a country largely dominated by repetitive pedagogy. Therefore, the training of the teachers was mainly focused on the sensitization to the practice of sports in schools, the posture of the teacher within the framework of a socio-sportive animation, and thus the principles of active pedagogy. Two three-day sessions were organized in April, as well as a reinforcement session in Saint-Louis and a training session in Bignona in November 2021. Each of these sessions was accompanied by the distribution of a teacher's manual co-constructed and validated by the MEN's school sports division.
The distribution of the educational kits, composed of materials, game sheets and thematic sheets, enabled the implementation of 67 PLAYDAGOGY sessions in the 10 schools of Ziguinchor, for a total of 1500 children. The delay in the delivery of the material to Saint-Louis forced the teaching team to organize a reinforcement session in November.