Support 2000 Students in Cambodia

by This Life Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia
Support 2000 Students in Cambodia

Project Report | Jun 10, 2024
This Life in Schools (TLIS) Update June 2024

By Alan Morgan | Strategic Partnerships Mentor

The This Life in Schools (TLIS)  program is a vital initiative by This Life in Cambodia aimed at improving access to and the quality of education in rural Cambodia. The program focuses on revitalizing and redeveloping secondary schools to reduce dropout rates and enhance educational outcomes.


Specific Goals

- Improve Access to Education: Ensure that children and their families feel supported by their community to continue accessing their right to public education.

- Enhance Quality of Education: Engage community members in school development to create a conducive learning environment.


Components and Activities

1. Community Engagement:

   - Conduct Community Driven Dialogue consultations with teachers and students.

   - Mobilize and train School Support Committees (SSC) and Student Councils (SC).

   - Support regular monthly SSC and SC meetings, school exchange visits, and annual reflection visits.


2. School Development Planning:

   - Assist SSCs in undertaking school development planning and follow-up on activities.

   - Involve SCs and local authorities in the development of School Development Plans (SDPs) and integrate these into Commune Investment Plans.


3. Teacher and Student Support:

   - Provide training to school teachers and headmasters.

   - Organise learning clubs, financial support, education campaigns, and revise school regulations.

   - Conduct meetings with parents and regular home visits.


4. Community Events and Research:

   - Support Women’s and Child’s Rights days with community-level events.

   - Conduct research to understand the root causes of school dropouts and poor attendance, and identify strategies to mitigate these issues.


Expected Outcomes

- Reduced Dropout Rates: Significant reduction in the number of students dropping out of school.

- Improved Exam Pass Rates: Higher pass rates in exams.

- Increased Student Enrollment: Growth in the number of students attending school.

- Sustainable School Development: Long-term improvements in school infrastructure and educational quality, continuing even after the program exits.


Rural Cambodian communities face significant economic challenges in accessing secondary education, compounded by inadequate government-provided educational facilities and resources. Many families struggle with poverty, making it difficult to afford school supplies, transportation, and additional fees for tutoring and snacks, which are often charged by teachers. This financial burden forces many children to drop out and seek work instead of continuing their education.


The quality of education is further hampered by a severe shortage of qualified teachers in rural areas. Many teachers lack proper training and professional development opportunities, leading to substandard teaching practices. Additionally, the physical conditions of classrooms are often deplorable, with crumbling infrastructure, poor sanitation, and a lack of basic amenities such as clean water and functional toilets. The absence of technology in classrooms further limits students' learning opportunities and their ability to compete in a modern, digital world.


TLIS goals foster community involvement to mobilise and empower local communities to actively participate in their local school’s development and management. This increases access to education for local children and enhances educational quality. By helping local people to mobilise they can create and implement school development plans and Commune Investment Plans to support headmasters,  teachers and students. This leads to a significant reduction in dropout rates, higher pass rates in exams, growth in student enrollment and a long term improvement in the school’s infrastructure and quality of education. 


The TLIS program employs a community-driven model for school development, focusing on empowering local communities to take ownership of their state schools. The implementation system involves several key collaborating groups and organizations, each with specific roles:

  1. School Support Committees (SSC): These are government-mandated groups similar to Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs). SSCs are mobilized to lead school development initiatives, engage in school development planning, and advocate for school priorities. They receive training and support to enhance their organizational and budget planning skills.
  2. Student Councils (SC): Also mandated by the government, SCs support peer-to-peer learning and student clubs. They participate in school development planning and activities, providing a student perspective and fostering a supportive school environment.
  3. Local Authorities and District/Provincial Offices of Education (DoE/PoE): These entities are engaged to support and endorse the program. They collaborate with SSCs and SCs to integrate school development plans into commune-level Annual Operational Plans and provide technical support and resources.
  4. Community Members: The broader community is involved through consultations and participation in school development activities. This ensures that the program addresses local needs and fosters community ownership.
  5. This Life Staff: Program staff provide training, technical support, and capacity building to SSCs, SCs, and local authorities. They also conduct monitoring and evaluation to track progress and ensure program effectiveness.
  6. Partner NGOs and Development Partners: These organizations collaborate with TLIS to expand the program's reach and provide additional technical expertise and resources.

The program follows an annual Action Learning Cycle, which includes training, community events, and regular meetings. This structure ensures continuous learning, adaptation, and improvement of school development initiatives, ultimately aiming to improve access to and quality of education in rural and disadvantaged communities.

TLIS involves a significant number of participants and organizations, and its impact is measured through various quantitative metrics.

Participants and Organizations:

  • Student Population: The program directly impacts an estimated 10,400 students across 31 schools, with 5,824 of these being female students, aged 12-17, in grades 7-9.
  • School Support Committee (SSC) Members: There are 372 SSC members across 31 schools, including 82 females.
  • Student Council (SC) Members: The program includes 341 SC members, with 194 females.
  • Teachers: The program involves 248 teachers, of which 104 are females.
  • Indirect Impact: The program indirectly impacts an estimated 48,000 children in 32 communes, with 24,480 of these being females.

Program Outcomes and Indicators:

  • School Development: Over $50,000 has been raised by school communities for school development projects.
  • Student Performance: 96.31% of Grade 9 students at partner schools passed their final exams, enabling them to continue to high school.
  • Community Engagement: 3,516 children in grades 7-9 benefit from community-led school development initiatives.

Surveys and Feedback:

  • Stakeholder Feedback: The midterm review of the strategic plan involved feedback from over 100 stakeholders, including community and government representatives, donors, partners, staff, and board members.
  • Staff Satisfaction: Staff satisfaction with This Life as an employer was rated an average of 8/10.

Articles and News Coverage:

  • Media Coverage: TLIS has been featured in various articles and news reports that highlight its impact on education in rural Cambodia.
  • Public Campaigns: The program's initiatives, such as the Reading Day campaign organized in collaboration with NEP Cambodia and the Teacher Development Support Organisation (TDSO) saw participation from over 300 people, including local authorities, teachers, students, and parents

These figures highlight the extensive reach and impact of the TLIS program, demonstrating its effectiveness in mobilizing communities, improving educational outcomes, and fostering sustainable development in rural and disadvantaged areas of Cambodia.


TLIS has achieved significant milestones in improving education quality and access in rural Cambodia. These achievements are evident in the transformation of values, attitudes, and actions among the targeted groups, as well as the empowerment of local communities.


  1. Improved School Attendance and Retention:
  • Dropout Rates: Significant reductions in dropout rates were observed in schools participating in the TLIS program. For example, Chann Sar School saw a reduction from 17% to 6%, Teuk Lech School from 23% to 9%, and Chub Tatrav School from 39% to 15%.
  • Enrollment Increases: Enrollment numbers increased substantially, with Chann Sar School's enrollment rising from 332 to 401, Teuk Lech School from 164 to 252, and Chub Tatrav School from 41 to 142.
  1. Community Engagement and Fundraising:
  • Funds Raised: School communities successfully raised significant funds for school development projects, such as $14,484 for Chann Sar School, $6,761 for Teuk Lech School, and $1,125 for Chub Tatrav School.
  1. Enhanced Educational Quality:
  • Pass Rates: The program achieved a 96.31% pass rate for Grade 9 students at partner schools, enabling them to continue to high school.
  • Infrastructure Improvements: The program supported the construction and renovation of school facilities, including classrooms, libraries, and sanitation facilities, creating a conducive learning environment.
  1. Capacity Building:
  • Training and Support: Extensive training was provided to SSC, SC, and local authorities, enhancing their capacity to lead and manage school development initiatives.

Dissemination of Results

  1. Behavior Change and Empowerment:
  • Transformation of Values and Attitudes: The program fostered a sense of ownership and responsibility among community members, leading to proactive involvement in school development. This shift in values and attitudes was facilitated through participatory practices and continuous engagement.
  • Empowerment of Local Communities: By involving SSCs and SCs in decision-making and implementation processes, the program empowered local communities to take charge of their educational development. This empowerment was further supported by capacity-building initiatives and ongoing technical support.
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Feb 16, 2024
This Life in Schools (TLIS) Update- 15 February

By Thabiso Mphisa | Communications Manager

Oct 18, 2023
This Life in Schools (TLIS) Update- 18 October

By Thabiso Mphisa | Communications Manager

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Organization Information

This Life Cambodia

Location: Siem Reap - Cambodia
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @tlcambodia
Project Leader:
Janet Davis
Siem Reap , Siem Reap Cambodia
$11,288 raised of $20,000 goal
146 donations
$8,712 to go
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