100 schools to benefit  from Aga Khan project

Pupils of St Peters Primary School, Katwe, Kampala, attend lessons at the school on March 10, 2020. PHOTO/JAMES KABENGWA.  

What you need to know:

  • The Schools2030 project is aimed at empowering schools to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4), aimed at ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education thereby promoting lifelong learning opportunities for all. Ms Janat Namatovu, the AKF Schools2030 project coordinator, explained that the project is aimed at supporting teachers through “human centred design thinking” approach.

A total of 100 schools in Kampala and Arua districts are set to benefit from The Aga Khan Foundation’s (AKF) Schools2030 project, a move aimed at equipping front line teachers with technology skills.
Speaking at the national launch of the 10 year-project last week, the AKF country manager, Ms Meralyn Mungereza, said the Schools2030 programme,” now operational in 10 other countries, is one of the initiatives by the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) aimed at improving the quality of education.

Ms Mungereza added that AKF came up with the project to close gaps in the education sector created by the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic that left many teachers without pay since learning had almost been halted.
“AKF has responded with the Schools2030 programme; a 10-year programme aimed at redefining learning and teaching by making the school environment more appealing to make learning more enjoyable as well as improve the teaching capabilities of teachers to deliver human centred programmes,” she said
Ms Janat Namatovu, the AKF Schools2030 project coordinator, explained that the project is aimed at supporting teachers through “human centred design thinking” approach.

According to Ms Namatovu, it is through this assessment programme that teachers will be able to identify skills and learning challenges amongst their learners. 
“When we identify these skill gaps, the teachers will be supported to design solutions that are specific to their classrooms, which we are calling prototypes in the incubation space,” she said.
She added: “Once these prototypes are developed, the teachers will be funded by the Aha Khan Foundation to test them and see if they work.”

Ms Namatovu further explained that the project will provide a platform for teachers from the two districts to network and share experience on how to be more effective. The director of basic education in the Education ministry, Mr Ismail Mulindwa, who was the guest of honour at the event, said lack of better skilled teachers is a big challenge for the sector.

“This is the key issue that we have been grappling with. We should do this as a team to support our teachers with the necessary skills to provide quality education to our learners. It’s for real, our teachers are lacking in this area,” Mr Mulindwa said.

Appeal to teachers
He urged teachers across the country to always endeavour to take up refresher trainings and courses to keep up with the changing digital era.
Ms Aisha Namaganda Ntege, the head teacher of Kiswa Primary School in Ntinda, Kampala, told this newspaper that even teachers in the city are in dire need of the project’s services because most of them are not well versed with ICT. This, she said, is the reason why majority of them did not continue facilitating online teaching during Covid-19 induced lockdown in March last year.

Likewise, Mr Jackson Ezati, the head teacher of Binze Primary School in Arua City, said most teachers and parents have a negative attitude towards a life skills oriented education approach since it cannot be examined.
Mr Ezati is optimistic that the Schools2030 project will help change how life skills training is perceived.
The Schools2030 project is aimed at empowering schools to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4), aimed at ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education.

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