Saturday, 16 March 2013

Innovation for education project launched


The project will help identify urgently needed and cost effective approaches to dramatically improving the quality of education.
The Ministry of Education, in collaboration with the UK Department for International Development (DFID), on Thursday, officially launched the Innovation for Education, a scheme that will fund 26 projects expected to help in promoting the quality of education in the country.

The 26 projects were identified fit for the funding out of the 39 that managed to present their full proposals in a time frame the ministry set. Funds range from  £50,000 (Rwf49.3 million) to  £800,000 (Rwf789.6 million). The whole project is expected to use about  £13 million (Rwf12.5 billion). The 26 projects include civil society and organisations within and outside the country. 

“Innovations are a proven method of accelerating the pace of change in education and creating real impact. Innovation for Education will enable this to happen in our schools too,” said the Minister of Education, Vincent Biruta, while launching the project at the Groupe Scolaire Muhondo in Gicumbi District.

Biruta is confident that innovations will play a critical role to further improve the education sector and to achieve the targets set out in the government’s Vision 2020.

Innovation for Education offers a major opportunity to test new ideas and those that will be identified as effective will either be given more support to carry on or even find ways of incorporating such projects in the Ministry of Education. The pilot project is being implemented and tested on the ground in classrooms, schools and other education institutions across the country over a two-year period.

Organisations implementing the project have various tasks based on the areas to tackle. For example, Save the Children, one of the implementers, will focus on ensuring that Rwandan children have access to high quality books.

With this, the organsation will support publishers to produce high quality, Kinyarwanda books and distribute them to schools as well as improving teacher’s skills, knowledge and confidence to use books in support of literacy acquistaion and learning outcome.

Other organisations will work in areas of early childhood care giver, teacher self-learning, setting up technical schools and empowering educational professionals among others.

“This project will stimulate supply and demand for this material by agreeing to purchase the materials with the condition that publishers produce more books,” reads a statement.

The head of DFID Rwanda, Mike Hammond, said this is the first project of its kind his government has supported in Africa.

“The UK Government remains committed to helping Rwanda get more boys and girls into school, and ensuring that children learn and gain relevant skills whilst in the classroom,” he said.

He pointed out that the project will help in identifying urgently needed and cost effective approaches to dramatically improving the quality of education.


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