Today marks the first ever International Day of Education and offers the chance to reflect on the role education plays for peace and development around the globe. This year, STS celebrates efforts to bring quality education and assessment to the students of Mali through the USAID/Mali Selective Integrated Reading Activity (SIRA).
SIRA, led by EDC, seeks to improve the teaching and learning of reading and writing of more than 300,000 students in first and second grade. This week, members of STS staff traveled to Mali to lead a series of training workshops on the use of the Early Grade Reading Assessment.
Below is an update on their work, excerpted and translated from an article prepared by USAID/Mali SIRA.
The Selective Integrated Reading Activity (SIRA) in Mali is a five-year activity (2016 to 2021) funded by USAID/Mali to improve reading outcomes for Malian students in grades one and two in the regions of Ségou, Koulikoro, Sikasso, and the District of Bamako. School-to-School International (STS) leads the capacity-building component of the project, working with the Ministry of National Education at the regional and district levels to implement and use EGRA for their own decision-making purposes. STS, in collaboration with the National Direction of Pedagogy, is leading a series of training workshops from 21 January–29 January on the use of the EGRA tool. The goal of these workshops is to equip participants with the skills to conduct an evaluation activity with EGRA, from the research design and sampling stages to data analysis and production of a final report.
Participants in the training report that they have learned a great deal through the capacity building program since its inception in 2018.
Mme Thera Kadiatou Traoré, Pedagogical Advisor, District of Bla :
“I had done at least 8 EGRA data collections from 2015 to now, but it is with this SIRA training process that I have better understood aspects like how to do an EGRA design, how to develop an EGRA report, and what I need after the report is prepared. This allowed me to see the real level of children through the interpretation of the results I learned. Also, adult education will serve me a lot. ”
Daouda Bathily, Head of Curricula Research and Training Division, Teaching Academy of San:
“The EGRA training process allowed me to leave the informal for the formal. Before, I found the tool very scientific but now, I can do research through sampling. My skills have been strengthened with EGRA design, research, planning, and reporting. After all these phases, together with our counselors and planners, we are now able to complete the entire EGRA process.”