LRC Plan

Planning is working 

LRC 

The LRC should be totally integrated in the county and district education levels and will promote the local education initiatives.

Proposed criteria and requirements for LR

Structure of the LRC

Each LRC can be divided in a teaching zone, a training zone and an administration zone. Offices of the Pedagogical advisors and the CE0/DE0 are situated in the building; the model school can be in the LRC or at a small distance from the LRC.

 

        Policy of the LRC

 

In general

Agency of change

Improve the teaching-learning situation in the classroom

Bring social and economical development

Take care of education requirements

Identifying the education needs

Acquire suitable materials for those needs

Locating the local resources and talents

Make maximum use of the resources

Assume major responsibilities in the in-service and pre-service education (training) of teachers

Assume leadership in acquiring, supplying and producing instructional materials for the country

 

The creation of a new pedagogical dynamic

 

Exchange of information

Exchange of opinion

Exchange of lesson plans, documentation

Exchange of experience sheets

Update the curriculum competencies

Pedagogical animation

Promotes and harmonise education of subjects

Promotes subject integration

Implementation of pedagogical innovations

Training of all education staff

 

 

 

The MoE should develop a general policy for all LRC; each LRC can develop their local policies depending on their activities.

 

The duties of the EO

The duties of the Advisors

The duties of the Principal

Provides technical advice on the processes and procedures for effective education provision, access delivery, coordination and pedagogy.

Initiates and collaborates with the LRC, procedures for review, monitoring and improvement of content and methodology of education.

Advises on various aspects of schools data and information collection and use.

Assists the LRC in the on-the-job training for school and LRC staff.

Directs activities for effective coordination, supervision and management of all kind of education institutes and levels.

Assists the LRC on activities for ensuring appropriate policy interpretation and implementation procedures for accountabilities, decision-making, reporting and data collection.

Initiates and participates in schedule of visits, monitoring and evaluation of institution activities in collaboration with the LRC.

Supervises, coordinates and reports the funds and facilities in the region including salaries, buildings, equipment and supplies (stores).

Prepares annual budgets and work plans for the region.

Initiates the recruitment, placement, transfers of staff and personnel of the district.

 

Providing direction for the development and maintenance of a county-wide system of resource centre service through legislation, regulations and policies.

Developing guidelines to direct the development of resource centre services. these guidelines may include:

Providing funding to school divisions through regular operating and capital grants and, where appropriate, through special initiatives.

Developing, communicating and continuously evaluating county policies and guidelines relating to resource centre programs.

Assisting schools to evaluate and assess their school library/Resource, training policies, guidelines and procedures

Developing an implementation plan to assist all schools to reach an acceptable standards

Providing leadership in the development of resource centre programs in through:

    • In service
    • Research
    • Dissemination of national and international trends and ideas

Providing leadership in the development of consultative services to schools.

Recommending learning resources which support county courses of study

Including in all new curriculum guides, statements relevant to the role of the resource centre in relation to the specific subject area.

Facilitating co-operation with professional associations and relevant outside agencies, for networking and sharing of resources.

Co-operating and initiating discussion with appropriate outside agencies, to ensure wide access to information, materials and services not otherwise available in the school.

Effectively communicating the importance of the role of the resource centre and its program to educational partners in the community.

Provide ongoing training for teachers, head teachers, parents and other education stakeholders.

 

Developing a budget for needed materials, supplies, equipment and services, based on identified resource centre goals and objectives

Developing, communicating and continuously evaluating policies and procedures for with resource centre program.

Developing long-term plans for the implementation of resource centre goals and objectives

Providing co-operative in service programming for teachers and teacher-librarians

Developing and organizing, for easy retrieval, a resource collection that supports the curriculum and meets individual and group needs

Providing programs and services that ensure the planned use of the resource collection

Co-operating with appropriate outside agencies to ensure wide access to information, materials and services not otherwise available in the school

Developing procedures to communicate effectively the importance of the role of the resource centre and its program, to Board of Trustees, Local School Advisory Committee, parents (PTA) and community...

 

 

Activities of the LRC

 

The resource centre as

A resource centre in the school

Centre of training and meeting

Centre of resources

Centre stimulating the creation of learning materials

Support centres for the work of the school in which they are located (the base school).

Bookshops selling textbooks approved by the Ministry but published by independent publishers.

Centre of textbook and school supplies.

Centre for the supply of school stationary supplies

Creator/publisher of learning materials

Mobile resource bank of books and resources which are taken out to schools

Study centre for teachers, pupils and parents

Centre for resource access and development

Centre for in-service training

 

Establishing the centre as the school staff-room and encouraging staff to use it in both a formal and informal way, as a space for staff to mark books, to read newspapers and magazines or even to have a cup of tea.

INSET co-ordinators at the base school being assistant LRC co-ordinators. • Establishing the base school as a "model" or "touchstone school".

Developing the Centre as the School Library, as a place where pupils can borrow books, as a study centre for students where they can do their homework, or read newspapers and magazines.

Developing the Resource Centre as the resource room for the school with texts stored and borrowed from centre. Examples already exist in certain schools which can serve as a model.

 


 Scope of the work

 A Learning Resource Centre in a County in Liberia has a lot of commitments in the world of education.

'To improve the quality in the teaching and learning of all subjects in all school levels ,a sustainable and well managed decentralised system for in-service teacher education should be put in place.

The LRC provides the necessary resources to schools and train head teachers and teachers in methods of resourcing and better management of schools.

It ensures that disadvantaged groups, girls, women, rural pupils from poor socio-metric backgrounds have equitable access to project facilities and education in general.

These tasks and commitments cannot be fulfilled only by the LRC; the system is carried by all the stakeholders.

Therefore a sustainable system is necessary:

Each functionary within the LRC (existing and future civil servants) could receive and agree a terms of reference.

The different stakeholders receive the support from the LRC in organizing staff training, teacher training, school project development etc...

Parents Committee have the possibility to sign contracts with the LRC to develop construction projects for the schools. (E.g. community building)

The presence of learning centres improves morale to some extent and gives teachers a feeling of status. They allow teachers, and to an extent the community, to feel part of and contribute to the energy of the education project.

Established schedules for meetings provide regular opportunities for professional interchange and as such could be seen as an important prerequisite for the development of a professional culture. At the moment this culture is mainly being shaped by the donor driven projects but for the future, self steering strategies would need to be encouraged.

Courses at the Learning centre boost the process of change in teachers by raising awareness and providing ideas and materials to replicate. This level of change is necessary before other strategies could help the teacher to develop deeper professional understanding and innovative practice

The in-service trainers and the staff working in the centres benefit from the opportunities available in terms of increased knowledge about teaching and increased skill in working with teachers. Hence there will be significant changes in the formal education system for teachers, particularly in terms of the teacher training curriculum. The focus and relevance of this curriculum will clearly become more finely tuned to teachers' needs.

Where Learning centres involve the community there will be awareness in that community that things are changing in education and consequently expectations will rise.

The approach to inset

 In attempts to make training far reaching and comprehensive throughout the education service cascade systems of training can be developed. Typically, in this approach, a training package is developed by an education department. A hierarchy of levels of personnel are then identified and training of the same, tightly framed package is passed down through each level of the hierarchy, with the trainees at each level becoming the trainers for the next level down. Teachers at the bottom of the cascade often receive their training from their head teacher or a member of staff from their own school.


The Cascade Model

Centralised analysis of need and design of inputs

Uniformity throughout the system

Delivery down a ladder of workshops

Learning Resource Centres

Provide expertise at district level

Localise needs analysis and design of inset

Provide high level reprographic facilities, libraries and seminar space which teachers can use for meetings, for Inset and to design learning resources

School Based Workshops

School decisions on needs

Reliance on expertise within the school

Development of school based resources

Development of Teacher Groups

 The cascade model as a means of disseminating ideas

 

The cascade model, if it is to be effective in changing teaching and learning in the classroom, relies on the careful development of relevant inputs which can be implemented in the classroom and on the effective replication of these strategies down the cascade.

 

Effective replication

 

Within any cascade the effectiveness of replication depends on the extent to which the purpose and objectives of each step in the cascade are the same. The top and middle levels of the cascade share the common purpose of preparing participants to conduct a similar workshop for the next level down. Here the evidence is that the carefully structured modules allow for a high level of replication. However in the final stages of the cascade the purpose changes. At the school level the purpose of the workshop is to instigate teachers groups which have a multiplicity of tasks depending on the modules.

 Cascading is supported:

 

• When the input and output are the same: for example: participants are undergoing a "workshop" which they themselves are to replicate

• When there is an opportunity to develop skills needed at the next level: for example in zonal workshops where resource teachers model in outline the sessions they themselves would run

• When the outcome is simple and clear and resonates with existing practice: for example, the idea of teachers groups is a familiar one in all schools

• When the idea is simple and clear and can be demonstrated easily at each level of the cascade; Example; dividing the blackboard in separate spaces to organise work

• When the aim is to raise awareness in teachers about educational issues through discussions

 

The Inset cycle:

 

Main activity

Sub activities

Needs assessment

and baseline

School visits

Familiarize with the District, Zone or School

Collect general data and information on previous in-service activities

Needs assessment

Collect data for a baseline

Planning meeting

List in-service needs for a District, Zone or a School

Plan in-service activities for the marking period

Preparation of

in-service activities

Prepare for the in-service activity

The preparation will depend on the planned activity ( school visit, workshop, designing tests, coaching...)

In case of workshop meet with the facilitators, design a programme, allocate tasks and responsibilities, and prepare T&L aids...

In-service activity

Workshop

Design tests

Coaching...

Supporting during

implementation

Coaching during school visits

Lesson demonstrations and observations

Teacher Group meetings

Individual training

Practical or material assistance for the school

Measuring impact

Collect data to estimate the impact of the intervention

Compare the collected data with the baseline conclusions

Extent of the impact

Explanation for ( lack of) impact

Remedial measures if necessary

Review and planning meeting

How were the activities carried out?

What is the impact in the school?

Way forward?

 

The LRC as home of “education for all”

 

Learning Resource Centres are encouraging professional interaction and a certain level of curriculum development and materials production, what results in improvement of the teaching quality.

Teachers' centres should be self sufficient.

The presence of Learning Resource Centres as much as their use improves morale to some extent and gives teachers a feeling of status. They allow teachers, and to an extent the community, to feel part of and contribute to the energy of the project.

Established schedules for meetings provide regular opportunities for professional interchange and as such could be seen as an important prerequisite for the development of a professional culture. At the moment this culture is mainly being shaped by the donor driven projects but for the future, self steering strategies would need to be encouraged.

Courses at the centre appear to begin the process of change in teachers by raising awareness and providing ideas and materials to replicate.

The in-service trainers and the staff working in a centre benefit from the opportunities available in terms of increased knowledge about teaching and increased skill in working with teachers.

The centre needs to have a lot of autonomy and freedom to respond to needs and changing demands.

The staffs at the centres need to have adequate training specifically for their work with teachers, not just for the purposes of a cascade. They also need to have status as experienced and successful practitioners and a level of independence so that they were not perceived as part of the inspection service.

Expectations for materials production at the centre should be very realistic. Facilities for making materials should be used and impact from teacher made materials should be there.

The centres need to be easily accessible for teachers. Centres should be used as drop-in facilities. The distances and expense involved in getting to the centres should be reduced and the restricted opening times should be flexible.

By developing the models schools as local resource centres the distance from school to LRC will be reduced.

 Teacher groups

 

Finding a convenient time by basing teachers groups on sessions taught i.e. drawn from all the morning, session teachers.

Time-tabling the Teachers' Groups in teaching time (and increasing children's time off task

Providing an incentive in the form of credits towards a qualification that can be collected for preparing and running a group session, presenting a lesson on a particular topic for others to watch (preparing a test, exercise or activity that can be used by all the teachers of grade

Basing the groups on subject/grade groups

Basing them on Grade or level groups

Basing the activities for the groups around normal tasks that can be made easier by meeting in groups; Lesson scheming, test writing, marking etc.

Teachers Groups can take place every week on a Saturday, during the week the different teachers can write agenda items in the TG record book kept by the Inset provider. The Inset Provider will change every marking period; the TG chair will change every Saturday. The chair is responsible for the report of the meeting.

School based TG through Lesson Study (Teacher training)

Like other professionals, teachers have a responsibility, to themselves and to their own profession, to deepen their knowledge, extend their professional skills, and keep themselves up-to-date on major developments affecting their profession especially in areas of pedagogy and subject content.

Teaching is a learned and a learning profession, and every teacher should also be a learner. Realising that teachers needed to continuously improve on their teaching methodologies and content delivery and the fact that it is not possible to send all teachers for in-service training in the colleges; the government should put in place measures to enhance Continuing Professional Development.

Through LRC the government can develop strategic approaches and programs for In-service teacher education:

-          Programs which are demand driven, responding to identified needs

-          Programs which focus on school needs and are based in Schools or Resource Centres

-          Cost-effective programs which enable large numbers of teachers to have opportunities for learning

-          Programs which include not only studies on subject contents but also methodologies, use of materials or way of management in classrooms

 

The majority of classroom teachers are already loaded by several activities within the school and with programs conducted by the Ministry and other organizations. Introducing a new system or framework of teacher education may also require a lot of additional tasks to the Ministry and all stakeholders. Considering this, it is advisable to utilize the existing framework of teacher education and to strengthen it, so that concentration is on the improvement of the teaching profession.

School-Based CPD targets a school as a venue of teacher professional development. A school is a place, where teaching and learning always take place. It is believed that the improvements are devised within the classroom. It is in the classroom where teachers are experiencing problems and concerns on teaching, and where educators should always focus their interventions on. Therefore, the venue for CPD activities should be at school with special focus on the classroom activities.

Under School-Based CPD, each school is requested to have Teacher Group Meetings (TG) and Principals’ In-service Meetings (PIM) regularly initiated by the LRC PA with the assistance of facilitators. The role of the Principal is that of creating a conducive teaching and learning environment, while the Inset Provider is responsible for the day to day teaching and, therefore, in-charge of school based CPDs. The role of the administration is also very crucial in the planning and resource mobilization for the school based CPDs.

The main actors in the meetings are the teachers. They are free to discuss their concerns on teaching and to exchange knowledge and skills in the groups. However, the experts from various educational institutions could be invited occasionally as observers. During TG the teachers can develop lessons, demonstrate lessons etc...

Each school should make its own training and TG program supported by the Models School and the LRC.