British Council Nepal
We believe that many ideas grow better when it is transplanted on someone’s head and I think we have been a little successful in transplanting a lot of ideas into people’s heads today which hopefully will take shape in the future. We also came across a lot of questions and I think it’s only when we start asking questions that we find answers. I do take that as a success for the symposium as well. The aim of the symposium was of course not to provide any answers but to create a platform to share issues and get different stakeholders to listen to those issues and start looking for answers. The sessions you heard today, the materials, resources and slides that you went through probably gave you some of the answers to the questions you were looking for or probably you met someone who could help you find those answers in the future. It’s time we should start working together in partnership and that’s exactly what the British Council is looking forward to, not just building a partnership in Nepal but within the region as well. Hopefully, that will happen in the future
Head of ELT Department, TU
Interestingly, I learnt a new term today that is DNA of teacher education. So, basically, some DNAs of teacher education to focus on are content, pedagogy, research, attitude and learning. When we refer to teacher training, it’s also about learning. As the symposium focused, teachers should always be open to learning and try to implement that in the classroom. The discussion that we heard from different countries gave a clear direction that we should shift our attention from teacher training to teacher learning, thinking and teacher motivation. At the same time, after hearing passionate stories from participants, I felt that teacher motivation is most integral part that can’t go missing.
Teacher education is a complex process as it includes social justice, equity, gender issues, disabilities, changing the lives of people, managing the attitude and keeping oneself motivated. But are we able to pursue those things? At university level, we are rethinking our courses in this dimension as well. The deliberation and discussion today helped me understand how teacher education is not just about teacher training but a broad issue covering socio-cultural issues, managing attitudes and others. Therefore, my takeaways are rather than focusing on teaching, it is really important to focus on learning. On behalf of university, we will be taking forward this discussion and are ready to collaborate.”
Girls Education Challenge Fund Manager
I am going to concentrate on two takeaways for myself and for development partners. First would be Implementation- the issues about transferring knowledge into the classroom, making it happen, collaborative working, understanding and taking action on the barriers to implementation that happens in the classroom.
There was a very interesting point made by Head teacher and panellists about having a base of research not based on assumptions and the need to contextualize relevant diagnosis. It is also important not to neglect the inter-linked issues like class sizes and so on. Since we are aiming for the change, those issues need to be tackled too. Similarly, we need to identify the modalities on how would we measure the implementation and how are we going to support the process and tackle with the challenges. As Chris Tweedale said, power can be transferred to teachers and we should involve them in the implementation process since they are the key person in transferring knowledge into the classroom.
Similarly, my second point on symposium would be accountability. I believe students, teachers, parents, communities, schools, local government, national government everybody are responsible for maintaining accountability. Everyone is capable in their own way and they can help by being responsible for what they do. Every level of accountability matters. And when collaboration and accountability meet, it becomes easier for a joint intervention of the implementation process of transferring knowledge into the classroom.
Ministry of Education, Science and Technology
As part of government, I would like to ensure that we would be incorporating the ideas and feedbacks from today’s symposium in our planning, designing and implementation of teacher professional development programs. Till now, the focus was only on face to face training tool for teacher’s professional development. But due to the symposium we are now open up to other tools and modalities like mentoring, coaching, classroom research, and online courses as well.
As focused today, the competency of teacher’s educators is necessary along with teacher’s education. Four to five years of teaching experience and a bachelor’s degree won’t make someone a possible candidate for teacher educator. In that case, a level of competency should be defined for those trainers.Similarly, training transfer practised by NGO/ INGOs should be demo-based. Instead on just delivering the lecture and providing the theoretical explanation, the trainer should demonstrate the practical example as well. Likewise, continuous classroom follow-up support should be performed. Nepal government is also planning to deliver training to school leaders. The course will contain topic like how to motivate teachers and so on.