Learning the alphabet
Teacher training has become a major focus for The Santi School Project following our big win this summer of a $15,000 grant from Better World Books. Working with primary school teachers is yet another way we can improve the quality of the learning experience for our children -- along with renovating schools, providing books and classroom materials, and helping pay teacher salaries.
Training has begun for the first group of 21 teachers from 7 school in the Lalitpur area. Overall, by next spring, we will train 150 teachers at 5 different centers.
How the training works
- A series of 2-day sessions followed by classroom observations of each teacher
- This cycle is repeated six times: a total of 12 days of intensive instruction and 6 separate classroom evaluations
- Training content is divided between early childhood development and English skills
Early returns are positive
"I have observed some training sessions. Based on the observations that I have made during the training and its implementation in the classroom, I believe the training is effective." -- Satish Kumar Jha, principal of Sisnery Higher Secondary School, Lamatar, Lalitpur.
"I have seen several other training programs conducted by various organizations and agencies. I think this training is better than others. I have also received positive feedback about the training from participating teachers and the principals sending teachers from their schools." -- Him Bahadur Thapa, field level supervisor from the District Education Office, Mahalaxmi Higher Secondary School, Lubhu, Lalitpur.
What's unique about our training
- English-speaking volunteers in every school: To supplement the instruction, a Nepali volunteer (usually a recent high school graduate from Kathmandu) who speaks fluent English will help out in the classrooms of teachers participating in the program.
- Incentives for teachers: Motivating public school teachers is one of the biggest challenges of the education system in Nepal. The top 3 performers from each training group will receive a small cash award, based on classroom observations.
Why teacher training is important
- 1 in 5 primary school teachers in Nepal do not have any training, according to the World Bank.
- The student dropout rate at primary schools is 38%.
- These rates are even higher in rural areas where we work. In fact, the central region of Nepal, where all our project sites are located, has the worst enrollment indicators in the whole country.
- Well-trained teachers make learning fun, attract children to school, and improve the quality of the classroom experience
How we will measure results
- Repeated classroom observations of the teachers by the trainers.
- An exam of students whose teachers are enrolled in the training program. Where possible, a control group of students, whose teachers are not participating, will also take the exam.
We're excited to have Rosy Lama as one of the 4 teacher trainers. Rosy is a former principal at Shanti Primary School in Ramche and was instrumental in the early success of the school. She moved back to Kathmandu to complete her masters degree and has been teaching at a private school in the city. She's never really left us, because she's been involved in our other teacher training programs.
Using beads in the classroom
Teachers practice their lessons