As the Teacher Training Program spreads and widens her wings further and wider, we recently had another training from 14th to 18th June. And guess who with? The School Quality Assurance Teams (SQATs) from 3 districts: Meru District Council, Arusha District Council and Arusha City Council.
SQATs are overseers, with the principal role of ensuring that teachers deliver up to the required expectations on a day-to-day basis.
They do this through school inspections, which entails reviewing lesson plans, classroom observations, and eventually providing feedback to teachers, putting forward recommendations on how the teaching and learning process can be more meaningful and productive for both teachers and students.
Our training for education actors, such as these SQATs, aimed at meeting, sharing, discussing, and learning from each other about good teaching and learning practices in the education space.
The five-day fun filled training ran for a maximum of nine hours, split into three sessions a day. Time flew so fast that the trainees kept wanting to stay longer and learn more and ask more questions.
Facilitated by the Teacher Training Program team, the training took on a participatory, trainee-centered, approach. The thrill was even more, given the SQAs in attendance were from different work stations, hence bringing together a breadth of experience and wider knowledge sharing.
Interestingly, the 32 trainees were placed in six different clusters. This allowed freer and more extended interaction, which yielded full participation from each participant.
We learned a lot from each other in this training. It was a rewarding experience that warmed our hearts, especially when we read and heard from their feedback and remarks at the end of each training day.
Some interesting comments from our participants were:
“This training has awakened and sharpened us as quality controllers. We would like TFFT to organize and conduct more of these in the future.”
“As Quality Assurance, I thought I was a god, executing my duties with maximum authority. However, I have learnt that I need to assume the role of a mentor, with the responsibility to collaborate with and support teachers, other than merely looking out for their faults and flaws.”
“Teachers are trying their best. Moreover, those in government schools work under difficult conditions. This training has helped me to appreciate their efforts and learn how to nurture them on their career path.”
“A frustrated teacher makes a frustrated teaching and learning environment, hence frustrated learners. As quality assurers, let us take and put the knowledge and experience shared in this training into practice. We should all go out and be more empathetic, and give feedback to teachers more constructively and compassionately to help ease the tension and pressures under which they work.”
We were more than delighted to facilitate this training. The SQATs were a jolly bunch of trainees that not only made the training exciting, but also strengthened rapport with these educational actors. Not to mention, it yielded a thrilling learning environment.