29 August 2017
by Kathleen Denny, Education Project Manager, Norwegian Refugee Council - Iraq
Teachers in Crisis Contexts
Middle East Multi-Agency Training of Trainers Report
Amman, Jordan, 23-27 July 2017
With endorsement from No Lost Generation and INEE, the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), International Rescue Committee (IRC), Save the Children International (SCI) and World Vision International (WVI) hosted a five-day training of trainers (ToT) for teacher training practitioners across the Middle East. The 25 participants were from NRC, IRC, SCI, WVI, UNRWA, UNESCO, UNICEF, Plan International, Relief International, An-Najah National University, Concern Worldwide and Finn Church Aid. The training was facilitated by IRC’s Regional Education Adviser, Paul Frisoli, and NRC's Education Project Manager, Kathleen Denny.
During the training, participants were introduced to the Training Pack for Primary School Teachers in Crisis Contexts, which was launched in April 2016. The training pack was developed through an inter-agency effort and is available as an open-sourced package on the INEE website (www.ineesite.org/tpd). The training pack consists of four modules based on the following core competencies: Teachers Role and Wellbeing; Child Protection; Well-Being and Inclusion; Pedagogy; and Curriculum and Planning. The content is meant to reinforce and strengthen other commonly utilized NGO teacher training materials, and to provide a standardized basis for teacher training in the region.
Facilitators from NRC and IRC guided participants through the four-day introductory training pack (ITP), and used a fifth day for discussions on how to contextualize the package across different settings and teacher profiles in the Middle East region. Throughout the training there were multiple hands-on opportunities to practice using the pack and to explore how to use the pack as part of a comprehensive teacher professional development approach.
At the beginning of each day, ToT facilitators modeled one session of the training for participants. During the afternoon, participants were assigned one of the remaining sessions to practice and demonstrate for the whole group. Presentations were followed by a debrief and feedback for the presenters. Each day ended with time for reflection to allow participants a chance to evaluate the training materials and identify contextualization needs.
At the end of the workshop, participants were asked to complete a feedback survey. Survey results showed that participants found the ToT to be engaging and motivating. Results also showed that participants believed the training provided enough practice time for them to become comfortable with the training material. Participants identified Teacher Role and Well-being and Curriculum and Planning as the most useful and valuable competencies for teachers. While Child Protection and Pedagogy were also mentioned as being important, participants felt that the topics of Teacher Role and Well-being and Curriculum and Planning were unique to the TiCC and not covered by agencies' existing teacher training materials.
Although participants generally agreed that the teaching methods demonstrated in the training were realistic for the teachers working in their context, participants voiced the importance of providing follow up and support to teachers in order for them to successfully use the new strategies in the classroom. Lastly, participants agreed that the facilitators communicated effectively throughout the training, however, many suggested that it would have been helpful to also provide the ToT in Arabic.
On the last day of the ToT, participants formed groups based on their country of operation to develop plans for how to implement the TiCC training in their respective countries. In general, participants favored a multi-agency approach to the roll-out, ensuring engagement of all the partners’ staff, teachers, and Ministry of Education (where appropriate). Country-level plans are still under development, however, agencies agreed to a coordinated roll out strategy to complete the following tasks:
Participants agreed on the need to deliver the training to teachers over a period of time, instead of all at once. Each of the groups plans to roll out the training 1-2 days at a time over the course of several months, with Teacher Learning Circles and mentoring between trainings in order to ensure continuous professional development and support for teachers.
Groups will contextualize and adapt the versions of the training pack that are currently being used in the Middle East. Most groups will use the version of the ITP that has already been contextualized to Iraq and translated into both Arabic and Kurdish. Groups will use the draft of the Arabic Extended Training Pack (ETP) as a resource for follow up trainings and TLCs. The Arabic translation of the Extended Training Pack (ETP) is currently being reviewed by the INEE language community and will be finalized in fall 2017.
Participants from the ToT will help facilitate an Arabic language webinar on the implementation and contextualization of the TiCC for the Middle East in October 2017.
For more information about TiCC roll-out plans in the Middle East, versions of the TiCC training that are available in Arabic, or for access to the ToT schedule and materials, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kathleen Denny is Co-chair of the reference group for the TiCC Working Group and Education Project Manager for NRC - Iraq. Masters in International Education Development. Over 8 years of experience in education in the U.S. and international contexts including 4 years of teaching at the early childhood, primary, and secondary levels. Additional experience in Lebanon, Turkey, Syria, South Sudan, India and Rwanda.