Teachers play a pivotal role in providing good education but in deprived, rural areas they receive little professional development or support. This is something that must change in order to enhance the quality of education children receive.
To improve teaching and learner outcomes our projects don’t focus on a single method like developing skills, stocking libraries or improving school administration in isolation. Rather, we use a holistic, child-centred method which works from the heart of communities to build teaching quality and capacity.
Enhancing early learning
Our Early Learning Enhancement Project improved learning for 4,795 pupils in Uganda by providing comprehensive training in early learning teaching skills alongside monitoring and one-to-one teacher support. Just 20 hours of individual training for early years’ teachers in rural schools was enough to significantly improve learners’ literacy skills.
Targeting early grade reading
In Ethiopia, our early grade reading project reached 41,126 learners through intensive language teacher training, monitoring training for headteachers and supervisors and resource boxes including supplementary reading books in English and local language. We also instigated annual reading open days to showcase the benefits of early grade reading and held tutorial classes for 7,770 students in need of extra support.
Link’s regular school-based support and guidance transformed targeted primary teachers into strong literacy teachers. These improvements were not found in larger, national projects.External Evaluator
Improving language teaching
Good literacy skills and proficiency in English in particular enables access to the whole curriculum and leads to better learning outcomes for children.
English is the primary language of instruction in many schools after the first few years, which is why it’s essential that teachers can effectively teach English and have good English language skills themselves. However, often the quality of English teaching is poor with many teachers themselves not fluent in the language.
To improve the quality of English language teaching in Ethiopia, we have provided extra support in English language instruction to over 900 teachers as well as distributing more than 20,000 books to aid literacy. Local language teaching is equally as important as proficiency in English for a well rounded education. As part of our Language and Literacy project in the Wolaita area of Ethiopia we developed a Wolayttatto Language Improvement Framework to improve the teaching of the region’s local language too. This included language and literacy training for teachers, school directors and district officials alongside literacy resource boxes for schools.
In rural communities across sub-Saharan Africa, boys’ learning is often prioritised while girls encounter discrimination and gender bias in school and from the wider community. This means they are more likely to drop out of school early without an incomplete education, impacting their future employment prospects and quality of life.
To tackle this problem we have delivered gender-responsive teacher training as part of projects such as TEAM, EGE and STAGES to make schools more inclusive, supportive spaces for marginalised girls.
In Ethiopia, we trained 698 teachers as extra-curricular tutorial leaders to help struggling girls. As a result, more girls complete their education with the skills and confidence to make their own choices and move forward to further education or sustainable livelihoods. We also train teachers in how to effectively support children with additional learning needs or those who are otherwise marginalised and excluded from education. This could be due to disability, extreme poverty or conditions such as albinism. This helps to make schools welcoming, safe spaces for everyone where children feel confident and encouraged to complete their education.