Tanzania: Innovative collaboration targets early childhood teachers
In partnership with the Tanzania Teachers’ Union, Education International has launched the “Developing teachers, improving early learning in Tanzania” project, which aims to improve the professional knowledge, skills, and competence of early childhood teachers.
Knowledge, skills and competence are at the heart of a new project launched by the Tanzania Teachers’ Union (TTU) and Education International (EI).
‘Developing Teachers, improving early learning in Tanzania’ will “raise teaching and learning standards in early childhood education (ECE), and contribute to better learning outcomes in primary and other levels of education in Tanzania”, noted EI’s Dennis Sinyolo during the inception workshop organised on 6-7 February in Dar es Salaam.
· Outlined project activities included the:
· Development of consensus-based and government endorsed competence profile for early childhood teachers
· Training of ECE teachers through a competence-based approach
· Advocacy of the government to implement the ECE policy
· Reinforcement of national cooperation
· Establishment of inclusive and integrated management mechanisms
· Capacity building training on project management effectiveness and collaboration
During the workshop, three separate sessions focused on: a) a situation analysis of the ECE situation in Chemba and Mpwapwa districts; b) a discussion on monitoring, evaluation and learning strategy development; and c) a discussion on advocacy strategy development, where Uganda National Teachers Union’s Juliet Wajega presented advocacy strategies developed by her union for a similar project in Uganda.
Participants also asked about resources and the implementation of the project at local level - a wide range of stakeholders will be involved in the project, with the TTU in charge of coordination at national level.
The workshop further reiterated the demands and commitment to the project by all project stakeholders, and stressed the importance to fully involve teachers, local and regional authorities in the project.
This workshop kick-started a four-year initiative led by EI and TTU, in close collaboration with Tanzania’s Ministry of Education and Culture, the regional administration and local governments. It was attended by 40 participants including representatives from the Ministry of Education and Culture, the regional administration and local governments from Chemba and Mpwapwa districts, the Tanzania Education Network, the Tanzania Institute of Education, TTU officials, regional and district education officers and chairpersons, directors of teacher training colleges, as well as international experts from Denmark, Ghana and Uganda.
Education International has already been implementing similar projects in Mali and Uganda for the last eight years, in the framework of the “Quality Educators for All” programme. In 2014, the latter was awarded the UNESCO-Hamdan Prize for outstanding practice and performance in enhancing the effectiveness of teachers.