Working with UNIDO to support TVET teachers in Liberia
As our reach grows, so do our partners. We were delighted to begin work with UNIDO, a specialised agency of the United Nations system that promotes industrial development for poverty reduction, inclusive globalisation and environmental sustainability, in September 2020 to deliver our flagship programme Teach2030 to TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) teachers and teacher-training students in Liberia.
As with all education providers, Covid-19 greatly impacted UNIDO’s in-person training and support, and they began a search for a low-cost scalable digital solution to help them continue to upskill teachers during this global crisis. UNIDO approached the Commonwealth Education Trust to see if our Teach2030 courses and platform could be a solution, and we subsequently initiated a programme of easy-to-access digital courses to TVET teachers.
UNIDO’s work is in support of Liberia’s Ministry of Education and Ministry of Youth and Sports, ensuring that their provision of Teach2030 courses to TVET teachers is in-line with capacity building objectives of the government. The Commonwealth Education Trust has worked closely with Senior TVET Coordinator Mr David Chakonta building the delivery plan to provide access to the in-service teachers and teacher training students that UNIDO supports.
Reflection from Mr. Stavros Papastavrou, Industrial Development Officer at UNIDO, who is part of the Liberia project management unit.
|COVID-19 brought forward a unique challenge to our operations in Liberia. We were faced with both adjusting to the risks of a pandemic and pivoting our plans to ensure some level of continuity in our work to support Liberia’s TVET system. We needed a solution that was simple to deploy and was coupled with the necessary mentoring required to introduce new ways of learning through a digital platform for TVET teachers. We are learning continuously and overall; we believe that post-pandemic these models of learning will endure. In the short-term it has filled the gap to continue learning through the pandemic and in the long-term mainstreaming digital learning in how capacity can be built for TVET teachers across the country. We have learned a great deal from CET and will continue to adapt and monitor the effectiveness of digital learning as we still face uncertainty during this global crisis.’|
CET’s work with UNIDO consists of a comprehensive training session plan largely consisting of self-directed learning via the Teach2030 modules along with structured support sessions planned by CET and led by the UNIDO on the ground. These provide opportunities to answer questions, keep learners motivated, guide and facilitate discussions and share experiences, and resolve any technical queries. This programme model supports each learner to independently progress through activities and requires reflection and completion of tasks between sessions.
By creating a UNIDO group on the Teach2030 platform and website, we were able to track teacher participation, as well as provide reports on progress. Teachers have been completing courses helping them to see the power of their smartphone as a learning tool, and how to apply practical active learning in their classrooms. Many teachers had not previously accessed digital learning, and the Commonwealth Education Trust has been instrumental in supporting and guiding teachers through the processes of course registration and completion.
We are delighted to see that 87% of enrolled UNIDO TVET teachers have completed a Teach2030 course; this is impressive, recognising that for many teachers using a digital learning platform for the first time was challenging. Teachers continue to engage with Teach2030 – as evidenced by the large number of UNIDO teachers who attended our first micro-training session held on 24th April. Read some of the feedback we have received from teachers who have finished ‘Practical Active Learning for Your Classroom’.
What do UNIDO teachers say about Teach2030?
‘This course has helped me improve my knowledge and skills as a classroom teacher’
‘I used the No hands strategy in Freshman Engine Technology class because it helped me understand who was taking in the lessons and following my teaching’
‘The Stretch It questioning technique lets me know who is understanding and who is not’
We look forward to strengthening our relationship with UNIDO. If you’re interested in finding out how the Commonwealth Education Trust can deliver Teach2030 for your organisation then please contact us today.