One hundred and sixty-eight new elementary teachers are today graduating from the multi-grade, mixed-mode teacher training programme in the Autonomous Region of Bougainville. The delivery of the training was a joint initiative of the Autonomous Bougainville Government (ABG), PNG Education Institute (PNGEI), Kokoda Track Foundation (KTF) and National Department of Education (NDoE). The partners identified the urgent need for AROB’s cohort of partially-trained teachers to complete their training prior to the change in certification and transition to the residential training framework to take effect at the end of 2017. The training was generously funded by a range of donors including the Australian Aid Program (via the Australian High Commission), Bougainville Copper Limited, the ABG and the KTF.
Delivered at a training venue in Lontis village, to the north of Buka, the training took place over a 6-week period with trainers from PNGEI, KTF and ABG district trainers. Over the 6-weeks, trainees completed all core SIU modules as well as a range of other workshops on child protection, gender equity in schools, and inclusive education. The trainees also participated in “Making Books” workshops and teachers and trainers wrote and illustrated culturally appropriate picture books that are appropriate to the Bougainville context. These books are now in the process of being digitised and printed for distribution to the teachers and their schools.
The AROB programme is the second round of SIU training that has been completed by the partnership between KTF, PNGEI and NDoE. In August – September 2016, the consortium also worked with the Oro Provincial Government to deliver the training to 330 elementary teachers from across Oro Province.
“Rolling out Teach for Tomorrow across Oro Province and now the Autonomous Region of Bougainville has been a significant undertaking for KTF. We have been so delighted to be part of delivering the training programme and ensuring that these teachers will not be lost from the teaching profession across these regions” said Dr Genevieve Nelson, CEO of KTF.
“We are so grateful to our donors and partners for their generosity and hard work in the lead up to and during the training. We could not have achieved this result without your help” said Dr Nelson.
The training is urgently needed in other Provinces across PNG due to a large cohort of trainees who began their training via the mixed mode SIU programme but were never given the opportunity to complete. These trainees need to complete the training before the end of 2017.
This week, KTF and PNGEI are also completing the roll out of the training programme in Gulf Province. KTF is currently exploring opportunities to take the training to other regions in 2017.