NECT upskills youth in Limpopo

Throughout 2015 and into 2016, the National Education Collaboration Trust (NECT), in collaboration with the Department of Basic Education (DBE) and other education stakeholders continued its work in the Vhembe and Waterberg districts schools, for improved education outcomes.

The NECT partnered with the ETDP SETA to conduct a four-week programme in Computer Skills Development  to train administration interns and learner support agents.  The is specially designed to enhance the effectiveness of schools administration through basic end-user computing skills. The programme was facilitated by the Africa Learn Foundation, and is accredited by the Media Information and Communications Technology SETA (MICT SETA). Following affirmative assessments, successful interns will be awarded certificates in May 2016. At least 255 school admin interns, 59 learner support agents and 105 experiential learners and interns attended the training.

Ensuring complete coverage of curriculum

In the beginning of January 2016, the DBE and the NECT conducted school visits in the Waterberg and Vhembe districts in Limpopo, as part of an annual campaign to ensure school readiness for the academic year, as well as ensuring that learning and teaching begins with immediate effect.

District education officials and circuit managers visited the schools to assess teacher attendance, checking the availability of equipment and facilities. The monitoring and assessment reports drawn from the visits were consolidated into a working document that informs a plan of action, aimed at assisting schools to deliver quality education and improve results.

In addition, the NECT and the Centre for Advancing Science and Mathematics Education (CASME) trained mathematics and science lead teachers in Vhembe in two phases - November 2015 and January 2016. 

The 9-day training course is an intensive support programme which aims to improve learning outcomes and learner attainment by capacitating lead teachers with multiple skills that will enable them to integrate two pillars of the syllabus, namely; technological pedagogical content knowledge and assessment. CASME, as the appointed lead facilitator, is collaborating with the NECT to supply all 90 lead teachers with training materials and additional tools to assist them throughout the training programme, which has been positively accepted by the teachers.

Similarly, NECT Leadership and Management Coaches (LMCs) and Curriculum Coaches (CCs) worked throughout 2015 to improve learning outcomes in Fresh Start Schools in the Waterberg district and to ensure that School Management Teams (SMTs) are ready for 2016.

In November 2015, LMCs and CCs hosted a workshop for Heads of Departments (HODs), principals and teachers, during which a booklet entitled “Instrument and Process for Fundamentals of Performance Assessment in School Management and Courageous Leadership” was introduced and distributed. The instrument is a self-assessment tool used to monitor and measure the effectiveness of a school’s delivery of education, focussing on elements such as teaching pedagogies and the effectiveness thereof. It provides information regarding the challenges that SMTs face, along with practical strategies to address these challenges.

SMTs will continue to work with the LMCs and CCs during 2016 to track their progress in meeting the Fundamentals of Performance Assessment tool that is used to assess and measure the quality at which education delivered. HODs are assisted in conducting weekly subject meetings with their teachers, who have also been provided with curriculum trackers. These workshops will continue throughout 2016.

The LMCs will also arrange a weekend trip for grade 12 mathematics, science and English learners from the Waterberg district to that tools provided to assist in curriculum coverage are used efficiently and that the schools are on track with curriculum in the academic year. They will be accompanied by CCs, who will provide special training, assess the amount of work completed by learners  and check the amount of work taught by teachers. The NECT team will also assist teachers and principals with the implementation of suitable timetables, as well as monitoring and reviewing of these timetables. This will ensure 100% attendance by teachers and learners, and the engagement of the Learner Representative Council in teaching and learning activities.

These workshops, programmes and initiatives form part of the NECT strategies that led to a positive impact in 2015. These activities will inform further interventions to improve learning outcomes at schools in the Vhembe and Waterberg districts in 2016.

 

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