Teacher content knowledge

Several studies have found that teachers’ content knowledge has significant positive effects on student achievement. Yet, teachers in many countries around the world still lack part of the content knowledge necessary for their teaching. For example, a research done in 2017 by The World Bank in seven Sub-Saharan African countries –representing close to 40 percent of the region’s total population–, revealed that ‘only about one in ten fourth-grade teachers master their students’ language curriculum, and about a quarter of the teachers fail simple tasks (such as subtracting two-digit numbers for math teachers…)’ (Bold et al., 2017: 3).

To ensure quality education, teachers must master the ‘content knowledge’ –body of knowledge composed by facts, theories, principles, ideas, vocabulary– they teach, as well as the appropriate pedagogy for teaching it (‘pedagogical content knowledge’). This Policy page will analyse multiple policy measures, which can help improve and control teachers’ content mastery.

References
Bold, T.; Filmer, D.; Martin, G.; Molina, E.; Rockmore, C.; Stacy, B.; Svensson, J.; Wane, W. 2017. What Do Teachers Know and Do? Does It Matter? Evidence from Primary Schools in Africa. Background Paper to the 2018 World Development Report. Washington D.C.: The World Bank. Retrieved from: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/882091485440895147/pdf/WPS7956.pdf

Coe, R.; Aloisi, C.; Higgins, S.; Major, L.E. 2014. What makes great teaching? Review of the underpinning research. London: The Sutton Trust. Retrieved from: https://www.suttontrust.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/What-Makes-Great-Teaching-REPORT.pdf

Guerriero, S. n.d. Teachers’ Pedagogical Knowledge and the Teaching Profession: Background Report and Project Objectives. Paris: OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Accessed 30 March 2018: http://www.oecd.org/education/ceri/Background_document_to_Symposium_ITEL-FINAL.pdf

National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. 2016. What Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do. Arlington: National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. Retrieved from: http://accomplishedteacher.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/NBPTS-What-Teachers-Should-Know-and-Be-Able-to-Do-.pdf

Singapore. n.d. Ministry of Social and Family Development. Achieving Excellence through Continuing Professional Development. Pulau Ujong: Ministry of Social and Family Development. Accessed 30 March 2018: https://www.childcarelink.gov.sg/ccls/uploads/CPD_Guide_5_FA.pdf

UNESCO. 2013a.
Education for All 2013-2014: Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002256/225660e.pdf

Promising policy options

Define a framework of knowledge and skills required for all entrants to the teaching profession

Develop a clear, coherent, and concise framework at a national level, specifying the common body of knowledge and skills which must be mastered by all entrants to the teaching profession. Use this framework to guide pre-service training and assessments, ongoing professional development, in-service evaluation, career advancement, as well as teacher certification (e.g. France has frameworks that guide professional development).

References
Darling-Hammond, L. 2014. One Piece of the Whole: Teacher Evaluation as Part of a Comprehensive System for Teaching and Learning. Washington D.C.: American Educator. Retrieved from: http://www.unescobkk.org/fileadmin/user_upload/epr/KEDI-seminar/2013/2014/one-piece-whole_Darling-Hammond.pdf

EFA Global Monitoring Report. 2015. Education for Development: Investing in teachers is investing in learning: a prerequisite for the transformative power of education. Oslo: EFA Global Monitoring Report.  Retrieved from: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/library/investing-in-teachers-is-investing-in-learning-a-prerequisite-for-the-transformative-power

ET2020 Working Group on Schools Policy. 2015. Shaping career-long perspectives on teaching: A guide on policies to improve Initial Teacher Education. Brussels: European Commission. Retrieved from: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/education_culture/repository/ education/library/reports/initial-teacher-education_en.pdf

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2005a. Developing teachers’ knowledge and skills pointers for policy development. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/12/0/45399491.pdf

Quality of pre-service teacher training and tests of content mastery

In many countries around the world, teachers enter their profession with low academic knowledge and skills. In this case, high-quality pre-service teacher training plays a key role by helping them acquire sound content knowledge and pedagogy skills, while at the same time allowing them to gain experience observing classroom practice and teaching. In order to be effective, pre-service teacher training should be adapted to the specific challenges that teachers encounter inside the classrooms.

To ensure that every trainee has acquired the required knowledge, they should be evaluated during, at the end and even after the training (UNESCO-BREDA, 2010). For example, in Ghana, teacher trainees must pass an examination on subject knowledge in the first year of their three-year training –they have two opportunities to pass, those who fail it twice are withdrawn from the training (UNESCO, 2016a). Moreover, a written evaluation and a performance assessment at the end of the training are essential, not only to ensure that every trainee has acquired the required knowledge, but also because it serves to strengthen trainees’ readiness to teach (e.g. Performance Assessment for California Teachers (Darling-Hammond, 2014)).

Another possibility –especially for countries where training programmes are diverse and unregulated– is to develop independent post-training assessments (Puryear, 2015). By setting those assessments, decision-makers could guarantee that only those who have gained the necessary knowledge and skills enter the teaching profession. Keep in mind that this policy might spur teachers unions’ discord, which is why it is essential to involve them in the process since the beginning.

References
Best, A.; Tournier, B.; Chimier, C. 2018. Topical questions on teacher management. Paris: IIEP-UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/topical_questions_on_teacher_management_english.pdf

Darling-Hammond, L. 2014. One Piece of the Whole: Teacher Evaluation as Part of a Comprehensive System for Teaching and Learning. Washington D.C.: American Educator. Retrieved from: http://www.unescobkk.org/fileadmin/user_upload/epr/KEDI-seminar/2013/2014/one-piece-whole_Darling-Hammond.pdf

EFA Global Monitoring Report. 2015. Education for Development: Investing in teachers is investing in learning: a prerequisite for the transformative power of education. Oslo: EFA Global Monitoring Report.  Retrieved from: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/library/investing-in-teachers-is-investing-in-learning-a-prerequisite-for-the-transformative-power

IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal. 2015. Education planners, search no more. Accessed 29 October 2018: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/blog/education-planners-search-no-more

IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal. 2018e. Brief 4: Pre-service teacher preparation. Accessed 30 March 2018: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/improve-learning/teachers-pedagogy/pre-service-teacher-training

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2009b. Creating Effective Teaching and Learning Environments: First Results from TALIS – Executive Summary. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: https://www.oecd.org/berlin/43024880.pdf

Puryear, J. 2015. Producing High Quality Teachers in Latin-America. PREAL Policy Brief. Washington D.C.: Inter-American Dialogue. Retrieved from: http://www.thedialogue.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Producing-High-Quality-Teachers-v.2.pdf

UNESCO. 2016a. A review of Evaluative Evidence on Teacher Policy. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002443/244373E.pdf

UNESCO-BREDA (UNESCO’s Regional Bureau for Education in Africa), IIEP Pôle de Dakar. 2010. Methodological Guide for the Analysis of Teacher Issues. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: https://poledakar.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/fields/publication_files/methodological_guide_for_the_analysis_of_teacher_issues_-_2010.pdf

Testing teachers’ content mastery in new recruitment

New teachers should enter the profession having a deep knowledge of the subjects they will teach, and the pedagogy skills required. It is possible to test their knowledge through a national examination, after a probation period (e.g. Luxembourg and Slovenia (OECD, 2013b)). It is also possible to test them by making them pass similar tests as their students (e.g. Peru’s 2004 national assessment of student learning also assessed teachers in similar mathematics and reading comprehension tests (UNESCO, 2013a)).

References
Darling-Hammond, L. 2014. One Piece of the Whole: Teacher Evaluation as Part of a Comprehensive System for Teaching and Learning. Washington D.C.: American Educator. Retrieved from: http://www.unescobkk.org/fileadmin/user_upload/epr/KEDI-seminar/2013/2014/one-piece-whole_Darling-Hammond.pdf

ET2020 Working Group on Schools Policy. 2015. Shaping career-long perspectives on teaching: A guide on policies to improve Initial Teacher Education. Brussels: European Commission. Retrieved from: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/education_culture/repository/ education/library/reports/initial-teacher-education_en.pdf

Mencera, C.; Schmelkes, S. 2010. Specific Policy Recommendations on the Development of a Comprehensive In-Service Teacher Evaluation Framework, Education Policy Implementation: Mexico. Paris: OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Retrieved from: http://www.oecd.org/education/school/48481142.pdf

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2013b. Teachers for the 21st Century: Using Evaluation to Improve Teaching. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: https://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/education/teachers-for-the-21st-century_9789264193864-en

UNESCO. 2013a. Education for All 2013-2014: Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002256/225660e.pdf

Professional development

Good quality education depends –to a certain extent– on giving teachers the best possible training, before and throughout their career. Research has found that providing more ‘opportunities to learn’ to teachers can impact students’ learning achievement (Guerriero, n.d.). For example, in contrast to PISA’s low-performing countries, the top-performers are known to give their teachers more opportunities to learn content knowledge and general pedagogy. For example, in Shanghai, China, all primary school teachers must complete every 5 years 240 hours of professional development (UNESCO, 2013a). Yet, for professional development opportunities to be effective, the content must be relevant, adapted to teachers’ needs, on-going, participatory, school-based and collaborative; teacher educators –trainers– must have relevant teaching experience and knowledge; and, teachers themselves must be encouraged, motivated and willing to employ the knowledge and skills learnt inside the classroom.

Teachers’ development must be understood as a continuum, which allows them to steadily update their skills and adapt to rapid changes in education. For example, in Nigeria every teacher must participate in a professional development programme of at least four days every two years in order to maintain their professional status and update their skills (Nigeria, 2012; ET2020 Working Group on Schools Policy, 2015). It is also essential to create a coherent learning system for teachers by interconnecting pre-service training and in-service professional development opportunities.

The following are some policy measures that give teachers more opportunities to learn, and could, therefore, improve teachers’ content mastery (to learn more on this subject consult Policy page Teaching skills):

  • Encourage collective learning to strengthen teachers’ knowledge and skills.
  • Develop short courses focused on improving specific content mastery. These are known to be cost-effective. . For example, Guinea’s shorter training courses focused on professionalization, have supported the training of 2000 teachers per year compared to 700 in the previous years (UNESCO-Breda, 2010).
  • Implement distance, e-learning programmes, which allow more teachers to be trained, especially in rural areas. For instance, after school fees were abolished in Malawi, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, distance programmes were implemented to train more teachers (UNESCO, 2016a). Adequate online programmes, supported by mentoring, can raise teacher content mastery. For example, during the Gansu Basic Education Project in China, an Internet platform provided learning support to distance teacher learners (UNESCO, 2013a).
  • Reward, when possible, talented, and motivated teachers with opportunities for real graduate study. For example, in 2013, Peru offered 500 scholarships to teachers who wanted to pursue Bachelor’s degree studies and 1,000 for those who wanted to undertake Master’s and Ph.D. studies, especially for teachers situated in rural areas or difficult zones.

It is important not to organise those professional development opportunities during working hours as it might increase teacher absenteeism, to learn more about this topic read Policy page Teacher absenteeism.

References
Best, A.; Tournier, B.; Chimier, C. 2018. Topical questions on teacher management. Paris: IIEP-UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/topical_questions_on_teacher_management_english.pdf

Darling-Hammond, L. 2014. One Piece of the Whole: Teacher Evaluation as Part of a Comprehensive System for Teaching and Learning. Washington D.C.: American Educator. Retrieved from: http://www.unescobkk.org/fileadmin/user_upload/epr/KEDI-seminar/2013/2014/one-piece-whole_Darling-Hammond.pdf

EFA Global Monitoring Report. 2015. Education for Development: Investing in teachers is investing in learning: a prerequisite for the transformative power of education. Oslo: EFA Global Monitoring Report.  Retrieved from: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/library/investing-in-teachers-is-investing-in-learning-a-prerequisite-for-the-transformative-power

ET2020 Working Group on Schools Policy. 2015. Shaping career-long perspectives on teaching: A guide on policies to improve Initial Teacher Education. Brussels: European Commission. Retrieved from: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/education_culture/repository/ education/library/reports/initial-teacher-education_en.pdf

Guerriero, S. n.d. Teachers’ Pedagogical Knowledge and the Teaching Profession: Background Report and Project Objectives. Paris: OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Accessed 30 March 2018: http://www.oecd.org/education/ceri/Background_document_to_Symposium_ITEL-FINAL.pdf

Nigeria. 2012. Ministry of Education. National Teacher Education Policy. Abuja: Ministry of Education.  Abuja: Ministry of Education. Retrieved from: http://planipolis.iiep.unesco.org/sites /planipolis/files/ressources/nigeria_teacher_policy.pdf.

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2005a. Developing teachers’ knowledge and skills pointers for policy development. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/12/0/45399491.pdf

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2009b. Creating Effective Teaching and Learning Environments: First Results from TALIS – Executive Summary. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: https://www.oecd.org/berlin/43024880.pdf

OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). 2015. Embedding professional development in schools for teacher success. Paris: OECD. Retrieved from: https://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/docserver/5js4rv7s7snt-en.pdf?expires=1540809687&id=id&accname=guest&checksum=C96D66F29EBF9182835A5AF3C59AD0EF

The World Bank. 2013c. What matters most for teacher policies? A framework for building a more effective teaching profession. Washington D.C.: World Bank. Retrieved from: http://siteresources.worldbank.org/EDUCATION/Resources/278200-1290520949227/SABER-Teachers-Framework-Updated_June14.2012.pdf

UNESCO-BREDA (UNESCO’s Regional Bureau for Education in Africa), IIEP Pôle de Dakar. 2010. Methodological Guide for the Analysis of Teacher Issues. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: https://poledakar.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/fields/publication_files/methodological_guide_for_the_analysis_of_teacher_issues_-_2010.pdf

UNESCO. 2013a. Education for All 2013-2014: Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002256/225660e.pdf

UNESCO. 2014. EFA Global Monitoring Report 2013/4: Teaching and Learning – Achieving quality education. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://un.org.au/2014/01/30/unesco-report-teaching-and-learning-achieving-quality-for-all/

UNESCO. 2016a. A review of Evaluative Evidence on Teacher Policy. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002443/244373E.pdf

To explore further

(As soon as feasible) raise standards for applicants to teacher training schools (e.g. in Chile teachers must score in the top 50% of the distribution). However, keep in mind that for this measure to be effective it must be accompanied with other strategies, such as effective salary policies and raising the teaching professional status. For more information, read:

References
Barber, M.; Mourshed, M. 2007. How the world’s best-performing school systems come out on top. New York: McKinsey and Company. Retrieved from: https://www.mckinsey.com/~/media/mckinsey/industries/social%20sector/our%20insights/ how%20the% 20worlds%20best%20performing%20school%20systems%20come%20out%20on%20top/how_the_world_s_best-performing _school_systems_come_out_on_top.ashx.

Best, A.; Tournier, B.; Chimier, C. 2018. Topical questions on teacher management. Paris: IIEP-UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/topical_questions_on_teacher_management_english.pdf

Mourshed, M.; Chijioke, C.; Barber, M. 2010. How the world’s most improved school systems keep getting better. London: McKinsey & Company. Retrieved from: http://www.avivara.org/images/How_School_Systems_Keep_Getting_Better.pdf

The World Bank. 2015a. Conducting Classroom Observations: Analyzing Classrooms Dynamics and Instructional Time, Using the Stallings “Classroom Snapshot” Observation System. pp. 19-28. Washington, D.C.: The World Bank. Retrieved from: http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/790221467997639302/pdf/97904-WP-Box391498B-PUBLIC-WB-Stallings-web.pdf

In order to increase teacher quality, it is important to complement the analysis of content mastery with other elements such as classroom management knowledge, teaching methods, classroom assessments and understanding students’ learning processes. All of these elements make up the concept of ‘General pedagogical knowledge’. For more information, read:

References
IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal. 2018e. Brief 4: Pre-service teacher preparation. Accessed 30 March 2018: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/improve-learning/teachers-pedagogy/pre-service-teacher-training

Guerriero, S. n.d. Teachers’ Pedagogical Knowledge and the Teaching Profession: Background Report and Project Objectives. Paris: OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Accessed 30 March 2018: http://www.oecd.org/education/ceri/Background_document_to_Symposium_ITEL-FINAL.pdf

Shulman, L.S. 1987. Knowledge and teaching: Foundations of the new reform. Harvard Educational Review, 57(1), 1-22.

Other policy options

In-service teacher training

Policy-makers with a constrained budget may opt to recruit untrained community teachers at the local level and provide them with high-quality in-service teacher training. For instance, in 2007, Benin gave three-year training to both contract and untrained teachers to help them acquire the necessary knowledge and skills. At the end of the training –and in order to become certified teachers– they must pass the same professional exam as the one civil service teachers do. In-service training is a rapid and cost-effective way of addressing teacher shortages as well as improving teachers’ content knowledge and skills.  Nevertheless, this is a debatable policy option as it might not only spur strong discord from teachers unions but also decrease teacher’s motivation and lower the professionalization of the teaching career in the country.

References
UNESCO. 2013a. Education for All 2013-2014: Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002256/225660e.pdf

Testing teachers’ content mastery through in-service performance evaluations

In-service performance evaluation allows educational authorities to assess teachers’ content knowledge and practical skills. It is judicious to base the evaluations on the framework specifying the knowledge and skills which must be mastered by all entrants to the teaching profession –in case it has already been adopted–, as well as on multiple measures since a single measure can be unproductive, such as (Mencera and Schmelkes, 2010):

  • classroom observations (it is advisable that several evaluators observe each teacher);
  • evidence of student learning;
  • teacher self-evaluation;
  • teacher portfolios (e.g. in Germany and Hungary portfolios are used to assess teacher’s practice);
  • teacher interviews;
  • school head assessment.

Although in-service teacher performance and/or knowledge tests can be effective in assessing teachers’ content knowledge, they are highly controversial due to teachers unions’ resistance (e.g. strong resistance from Mexico’s Teacher Union –Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Educación SNTE– against the evaluation processes and instruments used by the National Institute for the Evaluation of Education (INEE) to assess the teachers’ competences). If such a policy was to be developed, it is essential to involve teachers unions from the onset. Particularly when it comes to defining the evaluation processes and its criteria.

References
Mencera, C.; Schmelkes, S. 2010. Specific Policy Recommendations on the Development of a Comprehensive In-Service Teacher Evaluation Framework, Education Policy Implementation: Mexico. Paris: OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Retrieved from: http://www.oecd.org/education/school/48481142.pdf

Policy options for improving Equity and Inclusion

Gender-responsive policies

Promising policy options

Mainstream gender issues throughout teacher training offer

To increase the academic performance of students, implementing a gender-responsive pedagogy is crucial. Gender-responsive pedagogy refers ‘to teaching and learning processes which pay attention to the specific learning needs of girls and boys.’ (UNESCO Bangkok, 2017b:4). In practical terms, this means that ‘the learning materials, methodologies, content, learning activities, language use, classroom interaction, assessment and classroom set up are scrutinized to respond to specific needs of boys and girls in the teaching-learning process.’ (UNESCO Bangkok, 2017c: 6).

Quality pre- and in-service teacher training should not only develop teachers’ knowledge of their content area but also provide gender-responsive knowledge, skills, and attitudes for teachers. Through this training, teachers should: become aware of their own gender-related attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, and expectations of children; demystify their preconceived ideas; as well as gain gender-related knowledge and learn practical ways to implement gender-responsive pedagogy. Multiple initiatives in this sense have been developed in countries such as Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Eswatini, Trinidad and Tobago, Zambia, Kenya, Bangladesh, Papua New Guinea, Nepal and Mexico (UNESCO, 2017). In Nepal, for instance, UNESCO’s project trained 600 education providers in gender-responsive teaching (UNESCO and UNGEI, 2015).

The following strategies should be taken into account to mainstream gender issues through the teacher training offer (UK Aid, 2016; UNESCO and UNGEI, 2015):

  • Include both female and male teachers in gender-responsive training through an open and transparent selection process.
  • Design the training so that it is relevant to the local context. Include important topics such as sexual education, information about school-related gender-based violence (SRGBV), among others.
  • Involve the headteacher and school managers throughout the implementation of in-service training.
  • Create a supportive environment between teachers and school staff. Peer-teacher support is essential in contextualizing, sustaining, and embedding gender-responsive practices inside the school. Encourage teachers to work together and share the knowledge gained;
  • Implement effective and practical follow-up methods to ensure that the knowledge gained by teachers is being translated into gender-responsive classrooms. For example, implement an observation system to monitor gender-responsive practices within the classrooms and perform practice sessions to enhance teachers’ gender-responsive skills (for more information consult the Policy page Classroom observation).
  • Explore the possibility of recurring to ICTs for cost-effective training courses on gender-responsiveness (e-learning) (for more information consult Policy page Teaching skills.)

To produce lasting changes, teacher training must be continuous and recognize that changes will take time.

Moreover, to provide gender-responsive knowledge to teachers, teacher training institutions should go further than just giving a specific programme about gender. Institutional reforms in which gender issues are mainstreamed –making the entire system gender-responsive itself– are of utmost importance (GPE and UNGEI, 2017; UNESCO and UNGEI, 2015). For example, assess the balance of female and male teacher trainers –as well as members from the LGBTIQ community– but also promote gender parity in the number of female and male teachers accessing training (a quota system may help to promote gender parity (UNESCO and UNGEI, 2015).)

School management should also be gender-responsive. Gender-responsive pedagogy will only succeed if it is encompassed in a gender-responsive school environment (FAWE, 2006). Training for school staff in gender-responsiveness is ideal in order to mainstream gender within the system.

References
FAWE (Forum for African Women Educationalists). 2006. Gender Responsive Pedagogy. Working Document Draft for the Biennale on Education in Africa. Libreville: ADEA (Asosciation for the Development of Education in Africa). Retrieved from:  http://www.adeanet.org/adea/biennial-2006/doc/document/B5_2_fawe_en.pdf

GPE (Global Partnership for Education), UNGEI (United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative). 2017. Guidance for Developing Gender-Responsive Education Sector Plans. Washington D.C.: The Global Partnership for Education. Retrieved from: https://www.globalpartnership.org/content/guidance-developing-gender-responsive-education-sector-plans

UK Aid. 2016. Girls’ Education Challenge: GEC thematic discussion papers. London: UK Aid. Retrieved from: http://www.ungei.org/GEC_Thematic_discussion_papers.pdf

UNESCO Bangkok. 2017b. Integration of Gender-Responsive Pedagogy in pre- and in-service teacher training courses in Ethiopia. Bangkok: UNESCO Bangkok. Retrieved from: https://bangkok.unesco.org/sites/default/files/assets/article/Teachers%20Education/GenderAssessment-May2017/Ethiopia_Demissew.pdf

UNESCO Bangkok. 2017c. Preparation of a comprehensive Gender-Responsive Pedagogy (GRP) Toolkit. Bangkok: UNESCO Bangkok. Retrieved from: https://bangkok.unesco.org/sites/default/files/assets/article/Teachers%20Education/GenderAssessment-May2017/Ethiopia_Demissew.pdf

UNESCO, UNGEI (United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative). 2015. Gender and EFA 2000-2015, Achievements and Challenges: Gender Summary. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.ungei.org/234809E.pdf

UNESCO. 2017. Evaluation of UNESCO’s Programme Interventions on Girls’ and Womens’ Education. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000258978?posInSet=22&queryId=df97886c-2701-4a75-bfdb-46986e8ebf8e

Policies for children with disabilities

Promising policy options

Sector-wide strategies

To build the basis for a positive school environment where teachers will deploy the knowledge and skills learned throughout their training on inclusive education, Ministries of Education should:

  • Ensure there is a common understanding among all relevant stakeholders of the concept of inclusive education (defining the concept at a national level, taking into consideration the local circumstances, cultures and history is of utmost importance) (Ainscow, 2005).
  • Conduct general awareness-raising campaigns on the importance of inclusive education to all educational personnel.
  • Provide training on general knowledge about disabilities and inclusive education systems to relevant stakeholders (IDDC, 2013).

Ministries of Education (MoE) should create a comprehensive teacher training plan that:

  • Is based on the country’s current situation, and addresses how many teachers are needed in the education system, how many of them have received training on inclusive education and how many should be trained.
  • Recognizes which are the different options available for pre- and in-service teacher training as well as their geographic coverage. Either more training opportunities could be developed or the existing training opportunities could be reorganized to ensure a better geographic coverage.
  • Assign the responsibility to local stakeholders for tracking and publicizing the available teacher training opportunities (UNESCO, 2009d.). 
References
Ainscow, M. 2005. ‘Developing inclusive education systems: what are the levers for change?’ In: Journal of Educational Change, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 109-124.

IDDC (International Disability and Development Consortium). 2013. Every child needs a quality, inclusive teacher. Brussels: IDDC. Retrieved from: http://www.eenet.org.uk/resources/docs/IDDC_Every_Child_Needs_a_Teacher_leaflet.pdf

IIEP-UNESCO. 2018. Ghana: making inclusive education a reality. Accessed 10 May 2019: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/en/ghana-making-inclusive-education-reality-4564

UNESCO. 2009d. Towards inclusive education for children with disabilities: A guideline. Bangkok: UNESCO. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0019/001924/192480e.pdf

Adapt the training offer provided by Teacher Education Institutions (TEIs) – Teacher Training Institutions

MoE should evaluate if these institutions have mainstreamed (embeddedinclusive education throughout the entire training for all teachers (IDDC, 2013). If not, provide the required support to do so (instead of providing separate, optional, modules on ‘special needs education’ (UNICEF, 2014: 30).). Encourage people with disabilities to participate in the development of teacher training content and to become teacher trainers (UNICEF, 2014). In addition, make sure that trainers in Teacher Training Institutions and TEIs have practical experience in inclusive education.

TEIs and Teacher Training Institutions must balance the theoretical knowledge of inclusive education with practical experience (Ackers, 2018). They must make sure that teachers will be able to translate the knowledge acquired in their day-to-day classroom practice. Ensure teachers’ active, cooperative, and reflective learning throughout the training (UNESCO, 2009d.; Ghana, 2015; Grimes, Stevens and Kumar, 2015).

TEIs and Teacher Training Institutions should also provide training opportunities in information and communication technologies (ICTs). The use of ICT can enhance the learning process of children with disabilities, which is why all school teachers should be trained on how to use them effectively (Rwanda, 2018; UNESCO IITE, 2011; WHO, 2017). 

References
Ackers, J. 2018. Teacher education and inclusive education. Accessed 10 May 2019: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/en/teacher-education-and-inclusive-education-4789

Ghana. 2015. Ministry of Education. Inclusive Education Policy: Implementation Plan 2015-2019. Accra: Ministry of Education. Retrieved from: http://planipolis.iiep.unesco.org/sites/planipolis/files/ressources/ghana_final_implentation_plan_cd.pdf

Grimes, P.; Stevens, M.; Kumar, K. 2015. An examination of the evolution of policies and strategies to improve access to education for children with disabilities, with a focus on inclusive education approaches, the success and challenges of such approaches and implications for the future policy direction. Background paper prepared for the Education for All Global Monitoring Report 2015. Retrieved from: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000232454?posInSet=5&queryId=68c7ad44-8000-4ed9-a08d-5d06872f3d58

IDDC (International Disability and Development Consortium). 2013. Every child needs a quality, inclusive teacher. Brussels: IDDC. Retrieved from: http://www.eenet.org.uk/resources/docs/IDDC_Every_Child_Needs_a_Teacher_leaflet.pdf

Rwanda. 2018. Ministry of Education. Revised Special Needs and Inclusive Education Policy. Kigali: Ministry of Education. Retrieved from: http://planipolis.iiep.unesco.org/sites/planipolis/files/ressources/rwanda_sne_policy_2018.pdf

UNESCO IITE (Institute for Information Technologies in Education). 2011. ICTs in Education for People with Disabilities: Review of innovative practice. Moscow: UNESCO IITE. Retrieved from: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000193655

UNESCO. 2009d. Towards inclusive education for children with disabilities: A guideline. Bangkok: UNESCO. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0019/001924/192480e.pdf

UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund). 2014. Teachers, Inclusive, Child-Centred Teaching and Pedagogy: Webinar 12 – Companion Technical Booklet. New York: UNICEF. Retrieved from: https://www.unicef.org/eca/education

WHO (World Health Organization). 2011. ‘Chapter 7 Education’. In: World Report on Disability (pp. 203-232). Malta: WHO. Retrieved from: http://www.who.int/disabilities/world_report/2011/report.pdf.

Provide quality pre- and in-service teacher training on inclusive education

Pre-service teacher training should support teachers to gain the necessary knowledge regarding inclusive education and inclusive pedagogy. Inclusive pedagogy is an ‘alternative pedagogical approach that has the potential to reduce educational inequality by enhancing learning opportunities for everyone’ (Florian, 2015: 6). For example, through Scotland’s Inclusive Practice project, inclusive pedagogy was included in the graduate diploma in Education PGDE at the University of Aberdeen (Spratt and Florian, 2013). (For precise information on this subject consult Policy page Classroom practices). Additionally, teachers should have a basic understanding of different groups of impairment, while avoiding the labelling of students (UNICEF, 2014).

Help teachers to develop inclusive values and attitudes (Howgego, Miles and Myers, 2014; Spratt and Florian, 2013; UNICEF, 2014). Support them to become aware of their biased perceptions towards children with multiple learning abilities and disabilities –this is proven to inhibit pupils’ academic progress; accept, and welcome diversity within the classroom; believe in the capacity of all of the children to learn; and believe in their capacity, understand their responsibility and commit to teach to all children.

Professional development opportunities (in-service training) should be implemented as a continuum and be tailored to the school’s specific needs. School-based training is more effective than cascade training (IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal, n.d.; UNICEF, 2014), and it provides teachers the opportunity to translate the knowledge acquired into their everyday classroom practice. Moreover, it is essential to ensure a coherency between ‘pre-service teacher training and the national education policies and strategies’ (UNICEF, 2014: 35).

It is also key to provide on-going support and post-training monitoring to ensure the sustainability of the school-based training. For instance, in Lao PDR a national initiative was developed to provide in-service teacher training during 60 days over a 2 year period. This project was complemented with ongoing advice and guidance for teachers at the school level (Howgego, Miles and Myers, 2014). Promoting peer-to-peer support and coaching, and developing communities of practice, among others, is also essential to encourage teachers to collaborate and find joint solutions to their shared experiences (UNICEF, 2014; IIEP-UNESCO, 2010; UNESCO, 2009d; Ainscow, 2005).

 * Consult UNICEF, 2014 to learn specific strategies to increase the effectiveness of cascade training if it were to be implemented.

References
Ainscow, M. 2005. ‘Developing inclusive education systems: what are the levers for change?’ In: Journal of Educational Change, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 109-124.

EDT (Education Development Trust); UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund). 2016. Eastern and Southern Africa regional study on the fulfilment of the right to education of children with disabilities. Reading: EDT. Retrieved from: https://www.unicef.org/esaro/Regional-children-with-disabilities-UNICEF-EDT-2016.pdf

Florian, L. 2015. ‘Inclusive Pedagogy: A transformative approach to individual differences but can it help reduce educational inequalities?’. In: Scottish Educational Review, Vol. 47, No.1, pp. 5-14.

Howgego, C.; Miles, S.; Myers, J. 2014. Inclusive Learning: Children with disabilities and difficulties in learning. Oxford: HEART (Health & Education Advice & Resource Team). Retrieved from: http://www.heart-resources.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Inclusive-Learning-Topic-Guide.pdf?9d29f8=.  

Humanity & Inclusion. 2015. Education for all? This is still not a reality for most children with disabilities. Retrieved from: https://hi.org/sn_uploads/document/Education-pour-tous_un-mythe-pour-la-plupart-des-enfants-handicapes_en_1.pdf

IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal. 2019. Brief 3: Disability inclusive education and learning. Accessed 4 November 2019: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/issue-briefs/improve-learning/learners-and-support-structures/disability-inclusive-education-and

IIEP-UNESCO Learning Portal. n.d. Transforming Teacher Education to Improve Learning Outcomes. Accessed 10 May 2019: https://learningportal.iiep.unesco.org/en/forum/transforming-teacher-education-to-improve-learning-outcomes

IIEP-UNESCO. 2010. ‘Chapter 2.4: Children with Disabilities’. In: Guidebook for planning education in emergencies and reconstruction (pp.81-101). Paris: IIEP-UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.iiep.unesco.org/sites/default/files/Guidebook%
20Chapters/GB_2009_2.4_17%20Nov.pdf


Inclusion International. n.d. FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions: Questions You Have About Inclusive Education But Didn’t Know Whom To Ask. Accessed 4 November 2019: https://inclusion-international.org/catalyst-for-inclusive-education/faq/#_ftn2

Sæbønes, A.-M.; Berman Bieler, R.; Baboo, N.; Banham, L.; Singal, N.; Howgego, C.; Vuyiswa McClain-Nhlapo, C.; Riis-Hansen, T. C.; Dansie, G. A. 2015. ‘Towards a disability inclusive education’. Background paper for the Oslo Summit on Education for Development, 6-7 July 2015. Retrieved from: https://www.usaid.gov/sites/default/files/documents/1865/Oslo_Ed_Summit_DisabilityInclusive_Ed.pdf

Spratt, J.; Florian, L. 2013. ‘Applying the principles of inclusive pedagogy in initial teacher education: from university based course to classroom action’. In: Revista de Investigación en Educación, Vol. 11, No. 3, pp. 133-140.

UNESCO. 2009d. Towards inclusive education for children with disabilities: A guideline. Bangkok: UNESCO. Retrieved from http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0019/001924/192480e.pdf

UNESCO. 2019. The right to education for persons with disabilities. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000371249
UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund). 2014. Teachers, Inclusive, Child-Centred Teaching and Pedagogy: Webinar 12 – Companion Technical Booklet. New York: UNICEF. Retrieved from: https://www.unicef.org/eca/education

Policies for displaced populations and host communities

All policy options recommended in the general section apply to this category.

Other policy options

Incorporate refugee teachers in policy dialogues and build their motivation

Hiring refugee teachers is key, the valuable knowledge they possess on their own communities, language, lifestyle, and context should be mobilized inside the classrooms as well as throughout the decision-making process.

Involving the opinions of refugee teachers on issues such as the portability of certification and adequate pay are important management factors for both refugee and national teachers. However, there aren’t enough studies which critically analyse their perspective and opinions. An investment into involving their voice would add to the inclusivity in the national policies and management programmes, in a sustainable manner (Richardson et al., 2018). Engaging teachers’ participation in education programme planning and implementation brings them in as problem-solving partners rather than viewing them as part of a problem (UNHCR, n.d.). Invite teacher representatives to coordinate and planning meetings and consult them on a regular basis for feedback and planning purposes.

Additionally, for improving teacher motivation, it is imperative to improve working conditions. Efforts to improve working conditions should be part of broader education sector plans and should include the provision of teacher supplies each term, such as teachers guides and texts, the deployment of teaching assistants, and the use of two-schools-in-one to relieve congestion if needed.

Widen access to teacher qualifications through negotiation with MoE and/or related institutions, these negotiations can benefit by increasing numbers of scholarships to teacher training institutions, opening teacher training facilities on-site, through distance learning or mobile units, and by allowing for stackable credit for on-site, short term training or courses which can lead to a qualification. Those training opportunities will allow refugee teachers to gain the required knowledge to provide quality learning opportunities to their students.

References
Richardson, E.; MacEwen, L.; Naylor, R. 2018. Teachers of Refugees: A review of the Literature. Education Development Trust. IIEP-UNESCO (International Institute for Education Planning). Retrieved from: https://www.educationdevelopmenttrust.com/EducationDevelopmentTrust/files/8e/8ebcf77f-4fff-4bba-9635-f40123598f22.pdf

Bennell, P. 2004. Teacher motivation and incentives in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Brighton: Knowledge and Skills for Development.

BHER (Borderless Higher Education for Refugees). 2017. Borderless Higher Education for Refugees website. Retrieved from: http://www.bher.org/

Dryden-Petersen, S. and Adelman, E. 2016. Inside Syrian refugee schools: teachers struggle to create conditions for learning. Retrieved from: www.brookings.edu/blogs/education-plusdevelopment/posts/2016/02/09-syrian-refugee-schoolsdryden-peterson-adelman

INEE (Inter-agency Network for Education in Emergencies). 2009. Guidance notes on teacher compensation in fragile states, situations of displacement and post-crisis recovery. New York: INEE. Retrieved from: http://www.ineesite.org/en/teacher-compensation-initiative

INEE (Inter-agency Network for Education in Emergencies). 2010. Guidance notes on teaching and learning. New York: INEE. Retrieved from: http://toolkit.ineesite.org/toolkit/INEEcms/uploads/1004/Guidance_Notes_on_Teaching_and_Learning_EN.pdf

Policies for minority populations

Other policy options

Recruit and retain teachers from underrepresented and relevant minority backgrounds

Increasing the proportion of teachers with a migrant background to fully represent the diversity in societies and classrooms can be effective in reducing the gap between minority and non-minority children. Minority teachers act as role models for learners from relevant groups, and in doing so, this could enhance the self-confidence and motivation of the students.

Recognising marginalised teachers’ qualifications as well as providing them with support and in-service training and professional development programmes are important steps towards increasing the representation of people with a migrant background in the education profession. This would highlight the high societal value of teaching among the marginalised groups and would additionally promote the inclusion of migrant teachers as qualified staff. In addition, it is pertinent to involve minority teachers in the design of the training, utilizing their knowledge of the specific context, and cultural and social norms.

References
Heckmann, Friedrich. 2008. Education and migration: Strategies for integrating migrant children in European schools and societies: A synthesis of research findings for policy-makers. NESSE. Retrieved from: http://www.nesse.fr/nesse/activities/reports/activities/reports/education-and-migration-pdf

Quiocho, A. & Rios, F. 2000. The power of their presence: Minority group teachers and schooling. Review of Educational Research. Retrieved from: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.3102/00346543070004485

NHS (National Health Services). 2006. Meeting the needs of pupils from Minority Ethnic groups including those Learning English as an Additional Language. Policy Statement. Retrieved from: http://www.sompar.nhs.uk/what-we-do/children-and-young-people/

Policies for OVCs and HIV affected populations

Promising policy options

Training on HIV/AIDS issues and life skills

Pre-service and in-service training can be provided on HIV/AIDS and on relevant life skills, including knowledge about the virus, prevention, care, and treatment. Training programs should recognize that before being able to address student’s knowledge and beliefs surrounding HIV/AIDS, teachers will need to address their own attitudes, which may include stigma and bias. It has been observed that while HIV-related training programs can be effective in transmitting knowledge to teachers, it does not always lead to the actual implementation of the content in classrooms (Wood and Goba, 2011; Mwoma and Pillay, 2015). More effective approaches involve teachers in the design of the training, utilizing their knowledge of the specific context, and cultural and social norms. It is also important that there is a whole-school approach, and individual teachers are not singled out to be the sole experts and support systems on these issues.

Comprehensive pre-service and in-service training on how to address stigma and myths surrounding HIV/AIDS, sensitivity training, how to promote compassionate, non-judgemental beliefs and attitudes. This includes addressing the teacher’s own attitudes and experiences surrounding HIV and its own vulnerabilities. Teachers should also be aware about HIV/AIDS care, treatment and prevention and how to discuss these issues with students.

Coombe (2002) recommended that every teacher be provided with a low-cost, illustrated book in accessible language, to improve the knowledge of the etiology of HIV. Additional elements, such as life skills including decision making, self-esteem, peer pressure, communication skills, caring for the sick, sexual reproductive health, interactive and engaging pedagogy, identifying OVCs and children in need, and improving the home-school liaison need to be taught to teachers.

National training guidelines and materials on teaching HIV/AIDS and life skills should also be provided to teachers. Continuous professional training and refresher training; supportive supervision, such as observation by other teachers and suggestions on how to improve; as well as training programmes based on the real needs of the teachers, and their specific context should be provided to all teachers. Indeed, every teacher should be trained, including principals and school leaders.

Materials and resources should be designed with multiple stakeholders, including parents, teachers, and community leaders. Resources must take into account the values of the community, and how sensitive topics such as sex and reproductive health issues can best be addressed. For in-service training, facilitators can involve teachers in developing a specific plan for their school. The trainers of teachers should be part of the school system, to understand how the material can actually be implemented. Life skills and HIV topics should be embedded within the curriculum.

An enabling environment and whole-school approach should receive support from administrators, school governing bodies, principals, communities, and parents. Regular dialogue between all actors should be ensured. In addition, fostering collaboration between teachers is key. Strive for support from outside organizations and motivate faculty to promote an accepting, tolerant school environment; find opportunities for additional training; and provide leadership to comprehensively address the issues.

References
Boler, T.; Carroll, K. 2003. Addressing the educational needs of orphans and vulnerable children. London: ActionAid International and Save the Children Fund. Retrieved from: http://www.hivpolicy.org/Library/HPP001284.pdf

Campbell C.; Andersen L.; Mutsikiwa A.; Madanhire C.; Nyamukapa C.; Gregson S. 2016. ‘Can schools support HIV/AIDS-affected children? Exploring the ‘ethic of care’ amongst rural Zimbabwean teachers.’ In:  PLoS ONE, 11(1), 1-22. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4720431/pdf/pone.0146322.pdf

Coombe, C. 2002. ‘Mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS on education supply, demand and quality.’ In AG Cornia (ed.), AIDS, public policy and child well-being.  Florence: UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, Florence, 2007. Retrieved from: https://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/aids_book/chapter9_coombe.pdf

Mwoman, T.; Pillay, J. 2015. ‘Psychosocial support for orphans and vulnerable children in public primary schools: Challenges and intervention strategies.’ In: South African Journal of Education, 35 (3), 1-9. Retrieved from: https://essa-africa.org/node/501?i=d&id=604

UNESCO. 2006. HIV & AIDS and safe, secure and supportive learning environments. Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: http://www.hivpolicy.org/Library/HPP001275.pdf

UNESCO. 2008. Booklet 3: Educator development and support. Good policy and practice in HIV & AIDS and education (booklet series). Paris: UNESCO. Retrieved from: https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000146308

Wood, L.; Goba, L. 2011. ‘Care and support of orphaned and vulnerable children at school: helping teachers to respond.’ In: South African Journal of Education, 31, 275-290. Retrieved from: https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1136757.pdf

Training on counselling and psychosocial support

OVCs often experience emotional and psychological distress, discrimination, as well as increased home responsibilities, which can negatively affect their school performance and attendance. Schools and educators are in a unique position to support students through these issues as teachers are often the adults that children spend the most time with on a daily basis, and children are already connected to school services. However, care should be taken to not overburden teachers with these extra roles and responsibilities, as many teachers are already overworked and under-valued. It is also important to recognize that teachers are impacted by the HIV/AIDS epidemic and are dealing with these issues themselves. Teachers should, therefore, be fairly recognized and compensated for extra social support roles. Schools should provide designated social workers or counsellors to provide further support to children, as well as referrals to external services and organisations.

Training to teachers to properly address these challenges should then include:

  • basic counselling and listening skills;
  • supporting grief;
  • recognizing signs of emotional issues, sensitivity, trauma, and abuse;
  • awareness of and referral to external sources of support;
  • the psychological and emotional impacts of HIV/AIDS; and
  • how to show children kindness and support.

The training program should fit into local and cultural context (determining whether or not teachers are the most appropriate resource, in consideration of the possible hierarchical relationships between students and teachers). Recognition of and compensation for teachers taking on extra roles is key. These tasks should be included in job descriptions and timetables and can be a condition for promotions and salary increases.

Monitor and follow-up on the trainings on counselling and support, considering that these skills take time to develop. Appoint specific teachers for counselling and mentoring roles (if provided additional compensation).

Schools can provide designated counsellors or social workers to more extensively support children through psychosocial issues, as well as collaboration with external organisations and services. This can enable environment- and whole-school approaches in caring for OVCs, by assuring that these are met:

  • support from administrators, school governing bodies, principals, communities and parents, and regular dialogue between all actors;
  • collaboration between teachers;
  • support from outside organizations;
  • headteachers motivate faculty to promote an accepting, tolerant school environment;
  • opportunities for additional training; and
  • leadership to comprehensively address the issues.
References
Andersen, L.; Nyamukapa, C.; Gregson, S.; Pufall, E.; Mandanhire, C.; Mutsikiwa, A.; Gawa, R.; Skovdal, m.; Campbell, C. 2014. The role of schools in supporting children affected by HIV: Stakeholder report 2014. Harare: Biomedical Research and training Institute. Retrieved from: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/57266/1/__lse.ac.uk_storage_LIBRARY_Secondary_libfile_shared_repository_Content_Andersen,%20L_Role%20of%20schools%20supporting%20children_Andersen_Role%20of%20schools%20supporting_2014.pdf

Boler, T.; Carroll, K. 2003. Addressing the educational needs of orphans and vulnerable children. London: ActionAid International and Save the Children Fund. Retrieved from: http://www.hivpolicy.org/Library/HPP001284.pdf

Campbell C.; Andersen L.; Mutsikiwa A.; Madanhire C.; Nyamukapa C.; Gregson S. 2016. ‘Can schools support HIV/AIDS-affected children? Exploring the ‘ethic of care’ amongst rural Zimbabwean teachers.’ In:  PLoS ONE, 11(1), 1-22. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4720431/pdf/pone.0146322.pdf

Coombe, C. 2002. ‘Mitigating the impact of HIV/AIDS on education supply, demand and quality.’ In AG Cornia (ed.), AIDS, public policy and child well-being.  Florence: UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, Florence, 2007. Retrieved from: https://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/pdf/aids_book/chapter9_coombe.pdf

Mwoman, T.; Pillay, J. 2015. ‘Psychosocial support for orphans and vulnerable children in public primary schools: Challenges and intervention strategies.’ In: South African Journal of Education, 35 (3), 1-9.  Retrieved from: http://www.scielo.org.za/pdf/saje/v35n3/09.pdf

Wood, L.; Goba, L. 2011. ‘Care and support of orphaned and vulnerable children at school: helping teachers to respond.’ In: South African Journal of Education, 31, 275-290. Retrieved from: https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1136757.pdf

Policies for pastoralists and nomadic populations

Promising policy options

Hire local teachers from pastoralist/nomadic communities and provide high quality training

Ideally, local pastoralist/nomadic teachers would be hired to teach within their own communities, as they will have the required knowledge of the local language, lifestyle and context that allows them to serve the pastoralist/nomadic population. This is particularly relevant for mobile school models, as teachers would much more easily be able to move with their students. However, there is often not a large supply of a skilled workforce to recruit from. In these cases, pre-service and in-service training can be provided to locally recruited community members, but training must be of sufficient relevance and quality. Pastoralist/nomadic teachers should be given the same status and opportunities as other teachers, with equivalent pay and sufficient training and professional development opportunities.

Pastoralist/nomadic communities can nominate candidates for teacher training including nominating young community members for pre-service training. The government can provide high-quality pre-service and in-service training to competent locally recruited community members, equivalent pay, training, and professional development opportunities as other national teachers, and it can foster collaboration and partnership between communities, schools, government and development partners to recruit and train nomadic teachers.

References
Commonwealth Secretariat; Pastoral and Environmental Network in the Horn of Africa; Council for Education in the Commonwealth. Seminar on educating nomadic and pastoralist children, Marlborough House London, September 26, 2007. Summary Report. Retrieved from: http://www.penhanetwork.org/sites/default/files/uploads/manual/documents/Educating%20Nomadic%20%26%20Pastoralist%20children%20Final%2020-03-10.pdf

Kratli, S.; Dyer, C. 2009. Mobile pastoralists and education: Strategic options. Education for nomads working paper 1. London: International Institute for Environment and Development. Retrieved from: https://pubs.iied.org/pdfs/10021IIED.pdf?

Souza de, A. 2006. Forum on flexible education: Reaching nomadic populations in Africa. Garissa, Kenya, June 20-23.  Summary report. Vancouver: Commonwealth of Learning. Retrieved from: http://dspace.col.org/bitstream/handle/11599/276/NomadicReport.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

Tahir, G.; Muhammad Dahiru, N.; Mohammed Modibbo, A. 2005. Improving the quality of nomadic education in Nigeria: Going beyond access and equity. Paris: ADEA. Rerieved from: http://www.adeanet.org/clearinghouse/sites/default/files/docs/03_Nigeria_eng.pdf

Specific training on pastoralist/nomadic context, culture and curriculum and provide incentives

If competent, committed local pastoralist/nomadic teachers cannot be recruited, teachers trained specifically on the pastoralist/nomadic context can be placed in these communities and educational programs.  It is important that these teachers have an understanding of and respect for the pastoralist/nomadic lifestyle and culture, including knowledge of the pastoral production system (Kratli 2009). Pastoralist/nomadic children will also need educational content that is adapted to their specific context. This is not simply just teaching subjects considered as pertinent for them (such as animal husbandry) but also teaching the core subjects framed within their understanding of the world, in a way that is relevant to their lifestyle and needs (see Policy page on Curriculum development). These foundational subjects should also ideally be taught in their mother tongue.

Considering the difficult circumstances and extra demands placed on teachers working in nomadic areas they will require incentives, and adequate remuneration and professional development opportunities.

Pre-service and/or in-service teacher training should promote an understanding of and respect for pastoralist/nomadic way of life, on pastoralist/nomadic curriculum, and on how to adapt curriculum contents to a specific community context. Collaboration and engagement between teachers and pastoralist/nomadic families and communities are fundamental.

If qualified teachers who speak the local language are not available, consider hiring teacher aides/assistants who speak the language. Incentives for qualified teachers to teach in pastoralist/nomadic areas, or programs, such as hardship allowance, scholarships, special salary provision, transportation, professional development, and training opportunities, promotion opportunities social welfare services, accommodation, better salary scale are important policies to consider.

References
Kratli, S.; Dyer, C. 2009. Mobile pastoralists and education: Strategic options. Education for nomads working paper 1. London: International Institute for Environment and Development. Retrieved from: https://pubs.iied.org/pdfs/10021IIED.pdf?

Oxfam. 2005. Beyond the mainstream: Education for nomadic and pastoralist girls and boys. Education and gender equality series, programme insights. Oxford: Oxfam GB. Retrieved from: https://oxfamilibrary.openrepository.com/bitstream/handle/10546/120589/pi-beyond-mainstream-education-nomadic-pastoralist-191205-en.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

Tahir, G.; Muhammad Dahiru, N.; Mohammed Modibbo, A. 2005. Improving the quality of nomadic education in Nigeria: Going beyond access and equity. Paris: ADEA. Rerieved from: http://www.adeanet.org/clearinghouse/sites/default/files/docs/03_Nigeria_eng.pdf

Updated on 2021-09-10

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