“We are absolutely thrilled to have worked with our partners again to deliver the Teach for Tomorrow training to the 37 elementary teachers in Gulf Province,” said Dr Genevieve Nelson, Kokoda Track Foundation (KTF) CEO.
“These teachers are the foundation of the elementary education service across PNG and they must be supported. They provide education to children during their most formative years, setting them up for a life-long love of education.
“We are so grateful to our major donor, the Prime Minister’s Office and in particular, Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.
“His commitment to education and to supporting KTF has been unwavering,” said Dr Nelson.
The Kokoda Track Foundation (KTF) and its partners, PNG Education Institute (PNGEI), National Department of Education (NDoE) and Gulf Department of Education (GDoE), expanded its Teach for Tomorrow program to Gulf Province.
Delivered at a training venue in Kerema Town, the Gulf training took place over a 6-week period with trainers from PNGEI, KTF and Gulf Provincial Department of Education district trainers.
Over the 6 weeks, trainees completed all core SIU modules as well as a range of other workshops on child protection, gender equity in schools and inclusive education.
The trainees also participated in “Making Books” workshops, and teachers and trainers wrote and illustrated culturally appropriate picture books that are appropriate to the Gulf context. These books are now in the process of being digitised and printed for distribution to the teachers and their schools.
Trainees travelled from across Gulf Province to undertake the training, from as far as Kikori, Baimuru, Kotidanga, Kaintiba and Ihu.
Some of these teachers have been working as volunteers or on minimum government allowances for up to two decades. Having now completed the training, they will be transferred across to the Government payroll in 2017 for the first time ever.
Gulf Province is now the third province that KTF and its partners have delivered the training to, upskilling and certifying hundreds of elementary teachers to make them eligible for full Government payroll positions. KTF and its partners have, to date, completed the training in Northern Province, the birthplace of the Kokoda Track Foundation, and the Autonomous Region of Bougainville.
In a statement, KTF said: “More training is urgently needed in other provinces across PNG due to a large cohort of trainees who began their training via the mixed mode SIU program but were never given the opportunity to complete.
“These trainees need to complete the training before the end of 2017.
“KTF will continue to work with its partners and new donors to roll out Teach for Tomorrow to other provinces in 2017.”