The United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in collaboration with the International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (ICCBA) yesterday commenced a five day deliberation on a pilot test training modules for heads of teacher education institutions at the Grass Root Gender Empowerment Secretariat John Street in Freetown.
The objective of the module is to prepare teachers with the skills and capacity to deliver quality education in schools a cross the country, the four prepared modules are Institutional Management, Financial Management, Academic Staff Management and Space Management.
Chairman of the opening session Senesie Kuyateh Acting Director Ministry of Education Science and Technology said there are numerous challenges facing schools in the country noting that lack of capacity building for school teachers are major contributing factors to the decline in school standards, adding that the pilot test modules will go a long way in helping heads of teacher institutions with new innovative ideas.
Dr Sanya former employee of UNESCO who works directly with the International Institute for Capacity Building in Africa (ICCBA) gave the over view of the modules that will be deliberated upon within the five days, he also spoke about the poor learning environment in some schools across the country citing over crowdedness and lack of resource materials for teachers coupled with poor conditions of service.
The National Coordinator of the teacher training institute in Sub – Sahara Africa Prof Amy E. Joof properly explained about the benefits of the module and also gave a brief back ground of her organization that focuses on teacher education institutions.
She noted that they are going to identify the gaps in terms of teacher quality and quantity, proportions of trained and un-trained staff ratio with special focus on school facilities, resources, technology, staff competency, motivation and management system in school. Prof Joof said such needs analysis provides strength, willingness, opportunities and challenges that will be followed by a subsequent strategy planned for appropriate intervention.
She implored participants of the forum to make good use of the opportunity accorded them to build their capacity and improve on overall management skills and also apply them appropriately in their various educational institutions.
UNESCO Commission National Secretary BIS Konneh in his statement said there is a need to review the existing modules and inject new ideas in to the system for the effective deliverance of quality education to all. He promised to support educational institutions to improve on performance with adequate capacity building and learning materials. The Head, Division of Educational Studies at FBC Mrs. Blanche O. Macauley expressed gratitude to UNESCO and ICCBA for their continuous support to the educational sector particularly in the area of capacity building on financial management skills.
In his key note address the Deputy Chancellor at FBC Prof. Jonas AS Redwood Sawyerr said the rate at which new knowledge and processes are developed today and the competitiveness of the market force, which requires the need for continuing professional development.
The Deputy Minister II Ministry of Education Youth and Sports Lansana Nyallay officially declared the forum open, the forum is expected to end this Friday
By Saidu Bah