The Coalition joined a global convening of the Millions Learning Real-time Scaling Labs held in Feusisberg, Switzerland in July. Millions Learning is a project of the Center for Universal Education at the Brookings Institution. Hosted by the Jacobs Foundation, the event was attended by civil society leaders and senior government officials representing Real-time Scaling Labs in Botswana, Côte d’Ivoire, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Tanzania, along with representatives from Coalition-supported TPD@Scale initiatives in the Philippines and Indonesia.
Jenny Perlman Robinson, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and leader of the Millions Learning project, opened the convening with an overview of the project, now in its’ fifth year of implementation. She warned that “if current trends continue, the world will be 50 years late in meeting the 2030 SDG deadline,” underscoring the urgency of understanding how to expand and deepen the impact of effective education innovations to address the learning crisis. Scaling, she clarified, includes a range of approaches from “replication, to organic diffusion, to integration into national systems.”
Matthew Smith, Senior Program Specialist of Technology and Innovation at the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), pointed out the critical link between teacher professional development (TPD) and educational scaling: “Teacher professional development is the foundational scaling tool for education, a lynchpin for scaling education. If we want to talk about scaling education system innovations, we should be talking about scaling TPD.”
The Coalition presentation delivered by Juliana, Program Development Manager of the Putera Sampoerna Foundation School Development Outreach (PSF-SDO), and Sylvia Garde, Senior Program Manager of the Foundation for Information Technology Education and Development (FIT-ED), highlighted lessons learned from ongoing TPD@Scale activities in Indonesia and the Philippines, respectively. Rosalina Villaneza of the Philippine Department of Education stated, “It is important to involve government implementers from the outset. Teacher training is our responsibility in the department, and we were clear about our non-negotiables: content that meets our standards, and a training modality that is designed to reach all 600,000 teachers in the Philippines in a timely and sustainable way.” The Coalition is assisting the Department of Education on the national scale-up of a blended learning model for TPD.
Elan Merdy, Senior Director and Foundation Secretary of PSF, noted that being a part of the Coalition gives them access to a larger pool of experience and expertise. “Engagement in events like this helps us to recognize and avoid possible missteps, mistakes, pitfalls.” PSF-SDO is currently working with the provincial and district education boards to develop teacher learning centers as hubs for TPD. The strategy is expected to scale to reach 415 regencies, and over 2.7 million teachers in the country.
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