23 April 2014

Liberia: U.S.$800,000 for Teacher Training in Liberia

Liberian education authorities say the country intends to use the UNESCO-China Funds-in-Trust Project on enhancing teacher education for bridging the quality gap in Africa funding to enhance the country's teacher education programs through the pedagogical use of ICT for pre-service and in-service teachers.

According to a press release issued in Monrovia, Liberia is to benefit US$800,000.00 under the UNESCO-China Funds-in-Trust Teachers Education Project for teacher Information, Communication and Techonology or ICT in Africa.

Assistant Education Minister for Teachers Education, Moses Jackson and Dean Euphemia Abdullai of the University of Liberia Teacher's College, who made presentation at the UNESCO-China Fund Project Assessment Forum in Paris, France said, the fund will be used to enhance the capacity development of teachers training institutions to improve the pre-service and in-service teacher training courses, develop and improve the skills and knowledge and competency of the teacher educators.

Making the presentation at the just-ended UNESCO-China Funds-in-Trust Project, Assistant Minister Jackson and Dean Abdullai said the fund will further be used to strengthen and modernize the ICT infrastructure and facilities of teachers training institutions at the University of Liberia, the Zorzor Rural Teachers Training Institute, the Kakata Rural Teachers Trainning Institute and the Webo Rural Teachers Insititute, respectively.

The release narrated that the project in the immediate term, will attempt to identify different areas to be improved upon, including programs and courses, teachers educators,infrastructure and facilities as well as project and management.

In the future, the project will build the national capacity of institutions on how to improve the programs and courses, especially the first two-year programs of BSc in Universities and C-Certificate programs in rural teachers training institutions in line with competent regional and national institutions.

The project is to also identify the relevant resources, individuals and institutions to provide initial trainings for teachers educators and ensure that government takes charge of the maintenance and sustainability of the project alone with existing national initiatives and relevant stakeholders.

The release said the project agreement is to support the capacity development needs of several African countries, namely, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Uganda, and Liberia in relations to teachers' education and professional development.

The project also aims to accelerate progress toward the attainment of quality Education for All and the educated-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by enhancing the capacity of teachers' education system to train adequate numbers of qualified teachers in beneficiary countries.

Under the project, the beneficiary countries will enhance the capacity of their teachers training institutions by improving existing pre-service programs and schemes, particularly through ICT supported distance training program, strengthening teachers continuous in-service professional development, particularly through blended learning modalities and programs scaling-up successful ITC supported innovations.

This project was as a result of a visit paid to UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France, last year by Liberia's Education Minister, Madam Etmonia Tarpeh, when she held discussions with senior level UNESCO officials.

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