Investing in Teacher Training Pays a 23% Skill Return!

By Merritt Frey, Executive Director

 If you have 100+ teenagers in your classroom, you can use all the help you can get. That's where our training comes in...

If you have 100+ teenagers in your classroom, you can use all the help you can get. That's where our training comes in...

Thanks to our supporters, each year Mali Rising hosts a week-long training for our teachers. Last school year, we gathered 39 teachers from our 19 middle schools for a training where they learned from experts and grew with their teacher peers. Read more from that training.

Teachers in Mali are often provided with very little education and then sent to remote villages to sink or swim with classrooms that can be filled with 100 + students. This means a little training can truly be a lifeline for our teachers.

For each training, we evaluate a subset of participating teachers before and after the training. Experts observe the teachers in their classrooms and rate them on a set of criteria while taking notes on specifics. This information is used to 1) develop the training agenda to address challenges we see our teachers are facing and 2) to evaluate the success (or failure) of the training.

The results are in for our 17/18 school year teacher training! We are very excited to report a 23% improvement in teacher skills overall -- that's huge! In addition, here is just a sample of some of the specifics we discovered:

  • The largest skill improvements were in measures of active, interactive classroom dynamics such as a 62% increase in group interactions in the classroom and a 24% improvement in teacher/student interactions.
  • Our teachers also implemented ideas about more positive teaching styles. For example, we saw a 37% increase in teachers reinforcing positive student responses.
  • We also saw good improvement in more basic skills. For example, there was a 15% increase in teachers actively evaluating if students had grasped the core elements of a lesson. 

This type of improvement is only possible because of our donors who sponsor teacher support. We know great teachers are what makes a school great, and so do our supporters! Thank you. Learn more about the Teacher Project.