Conference on practice teaching introduces national guidelines for successful teaching

The past two days marked the formal introduction of new national guidelines for the practice teaching method
At the two-day national conference for practice teaching in Kabul, stakeholders from the education sector from across Afghanistan met to discuss how prospective teachers can best apply the theoretical knowledge they acquire in the first three semesters of their studies in the classroom.

In their fourth semester, student teachers come face to face with the real classroom for the first time in their studies. During a four months of practical classroom training, they can face the reality and responsibility of being a teacher in selected schools under the supervision of their lecturers and mentors.

The German government’s programme for promoting for basic and secondary education (BEPA) developed the practice teaching method in partnership with the Afghan Teacher Education Directorate. Together they have drafted standard national guidelines on practice teaching.

Attending the conference, Mr. Assadulah Hanif Bakhi, Afghanistan’s Minister of Education, stressed the importance of the method for the education sector, saying “A well-educated teaching workforce is a significant factor for a nation’s prosperity.” Dr. Asadullah Mohaqqiqe, Deputy Minister of Education, added, “Knowledge is power. If you want to eat an apple you have to plant a tree first, nurture it and only then can you eat the fruit. Practice teaching is what is necessary for our teachers to do their job better.”

As Mr. Robert Kressirer, Country Director of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) Gmbh in Afghanistan, also stressed at the conference, “Germany is very committed to education. This year is the 100th anniversary of Afghan-German friendship. Education has always been a pillar and cornerstone of the cooperation between the two nations. Germany, maybe better than other nations, understands that teaching is the one profession that creates all other professions.”

So far, the guidelines have been tried and tested in the provinces Balkh, Sar-I Pol, Takhar, Kunduz and Badakhshan. The conference focused on introducing the practice teaching approach around the country. Now, provinces that have so far had little or no involvement in developing their education syllabus for student teachers can now introduce and benefit from the method in their teacher training.

Active since 2005, BEPA is a joint programme of German Cooperation with Afghanistan implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and Swiss Development Cooperation (DEZA). Together with the MoE in Kabul and the education departments in the provinces, BEPA aims at establishing a sound foundation for teacher training in Afghanistan.