Kiribati Education Improvement Program - KEIP

Uploaded by AusAIDvideo on 02.06.2011

ALL: Monday.
Wednesday. Thursday.
WOMAN: Education is the flagship program for AusAID as an agency,
and that's really articulated at the country level in Kiribati
when you look at our commitment to the education sector
in terms of scholarships, TVET,
and also phase one of the Kiribati Education Improvement Program.
You differentiate...
WOMAN: The Kiribati Education Improvement Program, KEIP,
came into being at the request of the government of Kiribati
in answer to widespread community concern
at the standard of education being offered to the young in Kiribati
as they face a new and perhaps different future in the modern world.
This is the start of a 10-year program,
a joint program between the government of Kiribati,
key funders, including AusAID, UNICEF and UNESCO,
which looks at providing a foundation for basic education
for ALL young people in Kiribati, on every island in Kiribati.
Stage one of KEIP is $8.2 million
and the focus of that will be on facilities,
which is basically schools.
Policy and legislation,
so the ministry can function in a modern way.
The third area is work for skills development,
which is a real focus on teachers
and just providing them with the resources and tools to do their job.
And then the last area is curriculum and assessment -
so, it's really focusing
at the curriculum that's being taught at the school
and making sure that's appropriate
and actually fits in with the government of Kiribati's objectives.
The KEIP project is very important for our country and our people.
It affects our communities, teachers,
and above all, our children and the future generations.
MAN: Each and every one of you here,
including those that will be attending
the similar workshop in Christmas Island later on in the year,
are key players in implementing the KEIP project.
We are having a workshop for the aid teachers and all principals
in the primary, junior and senior secondary schools.
- MAN: Now, one, two, work! - (ALL CLAP)
LINDA UAN: 90 senior staff have come from 16 scattered islands
to attend this inaugural workshop.
DR IAN COSIER: The key people in any education system
are the school leaders,
so it is fundamental to have school leaders involved,
school leaders owning and school leaders driving
an education reform agenda.
A lot of research from around the world has shown
if you don't do that, you may as well give up before you start.
I think it's important to have this commitment,
and it's fantastic to see the response
and the number of head teachers that have turned up to start this process.
MAN: We are all part of a community. We are all part of a school.
LINDA UAN: Early in the workshop,
the Speaker from the House of Assembly shared his views.
What do you think parents talk about?
What do you think the community talk about?
What do you think the politicians talk about?
What do you think the island councils talk about?
They talk about principals and head teachers.
DR IAN COSIER: It is a requirement or a prerequisite
for high-quality learning
to have good community relations.
It is a prerequisite.
For some communities, you don't have to do much work to get that.
For other communities, you have to do quite a lot of work.
If the school and the communities did not have that good relationship,
then the community will not bother to look after, you know, the facilities.
They will not bother to look after the resources of the schools.
And those things contribute a lot to the learning of the student.
And if that good relationship is not really well achieved,
then the community will not bother to send their students to schools.
There is a lot of evidence that suggests
if you have a problem with English level up here,
it also is a problem with English level here,
it is a problem down here,
and some people actually argue it's a problem with early childhood.
LINDA UAN: An important tool in assessing schools and their teachers
and the learning outcomes for children
are the local STAKI results.
From these, it is possible to measure the results for each school
against the national average,
and in future, the performance of each class teacher
will also be able to be measured.
So, if you're having a look at a school with that sort of profile
and you compare with the national,
you can start seeing where your strengths are
and where your slight weaknesses or real weaknesses are.
But it is not good enough to retain children in school
without giving them a quality education.
The last thing I want to see is bored children sitting there not learning.
I actually want to see motivated children
excited to get to school...
The critical relationship between teacher and student
is the most critical component of any education system.
Stand up.
(SINGS) # I see you, I see you... #
DR IAN COSIER: So, when you start looking at a system like Kiribati,
there is certainly some fantastic examples of learning
and there are some fantastic examples of...of good teaching.
In Kiribati, it is very mixed.
At the bottom end, there is some atrocious performance.
There will need to be, in my view, intervention strategies
on how to work with some of those poorer-performing teachers,
some of those poorer-performing school leaders
to actually work out whether that is...
..with additional training, whether they make the grade,
or whether there is a different role for them.
LINDA UAN: In this, the first phase of the key project,
much-needed reconstruction work will be carried out
on six outer island schools.
This school, on Marakei, points to the need.
However, the junior secondary school on the same island
is in an almost equally desperate state of disrepair.
DR IAN COSIER: And if you went into that school cold,
there isn't a door on the school.
It's in a shocking condition.
But in spite of all of that,
they have got fantastic-quality results
across all their subject areas that are tested,
and it's much higher than national average.
It is an area that demonstrates, in spite of the conditions,
it is not the school that maketh the child, but in fact the teacher.
I think one of the strongest things that came out of the workshop
was how well and effectively they worked as a team, as peers,
where they started looking at all the schools and islands on performance
and comparing notes
and asking the question,
"Why can't we work together across our schools more effectively?"
Now, we knew when we were planning it
it was going to be a horrible amount of stuff to give to them,
but I'm grateful
just how they've basically hung with it all the way through.
So, it's the sheer volume of their role and the complexity of their role
that they really picked up,
and I'm actually incredibly optimistic
that many of them will go back
and share that documentation with their teachers
and start building real school teams.
One particular area that I was quite fascinated about
is how to improve your leadership skills in schools
so that there is cooperation and collaboration
among the teachers and the community.
It's really interesting and enjoyable
and we learnt a lot of things to improve our school.
Well, my dream is to have good teachers
in every school, in every island,
recognised by their communities for the great jobs they do.
LINDA UAN: And so, after four very intensive days,
the workshop draws to a close.
Australia, UNESCO and UNICEF are very proud to be working
in partnership with your government, the government of Kiribati,
on what is, in my view, the most important policy implementation
since independence itself.
We will continue to maintain well into the future
our commitment to deliver real change
across all parts of the education sector in Kiribati.
But we can't do it alone,
and so it's now up to you to become active partners in KEIP.
JOANNE CRAIGIE: You can make such a vital and long-lasting difference
to the nation you are continuing to build
as the beginning of a new era in education
and a new chapter in the history of the people of Kiribati.