Beans & Rice for the Soul

teaching, learning and living around the world

So, what is EduCorps really about?!

EduCorps is not about “saving” Africa.
It is not about “us” teaching “them” something that we know how to do better.
It is not about donating pencils, sponsoring students or building new schools.

We have an idea that we think will dramatically improve education systems, world wide,
and we think that Central Africa is a fantastic place to start.

Why test out our idea in central Africa?
1. Because students there have the most to gain.
2. Because teachers there are eager for more training.

A recent survey in DR Congo found that although 98% of teachers have not received education beyond high school, 85% of teachers WANT to obtain more education or training.

Most teachers in America roll their eyes at the thought of yet another professional development day.

In America, like in many countries, poorly implemented professional development programs have wounded teachers- leaving them suspicious, defensive and tired.

In central Africa, like many regions around the world, teachers have NOT YET become jaded by bad professional development.  Most teachers- around 85%- are eager, responsive and ready to learn.

So, what’s this big idea that’s going to dramatically improve schooling, world wide?

Nowadays it’s called COACHING.  But it’s not new, in fact it’s very old.
If you think about it, it’s basically an apprenticeship model.
You MASTER a craft, by practicing it repeatedly and getting frequent on-the-job feedback.

So, that’s it.  That’s the big idea.
Coaches can support teachers in mastering their craft.

EduCorps will START trying to dramatically improve schooling, world wide, by training our first three cohorts of teacher coaches in Rwanda during the 2014-2015 school year.

How is this NOT an “us” teaching “them” something that we know how to do better?

That’s what makes EduCorps so compelling!! WEEE DON’T DO THIS BETTER!! It’s not an US vs. THEM because the ENTIRE world needs to get better at supporting teachers in mastering their craft.

In America, most schools FAIL to acknowledge differences in teacher effectiveness.
Most schools FAIL to give teachers real, frequent, on-the-job feedback.  

So if it was US teaching THEM the way WE do it… we’d be teaching a pretty shitty professional development model.

VERY FEW schools in America offer effective coaching programs.
I’ve experienced it myself here and read about it here, here, and here.
In America this not the norm, not something “we” have mastered.
This is cutting edge.

I think that COACHING is the key innovation of many high performing schools with historically low performing students.  I want to package COACHING so that it can be used in any school that aims for higher performing students and higher performing teachers.

EduCorps wants to know if coaching teachers can really work for any school, anywhere in the world.

So why not start with the schools whose students have the MOST to gain?
whose teachers are EAGER to learn?

So what’s EduCorps really about, you ask?

For now, we’re about coaching teachers in central Africa.

So that teachers can teach as effectively as possible, as soon as possible.
Because that’s what all humans want for all teachers, everywhere.

And so that students can achieve as much as possible, as soon as possible.
Because that’s what all humans want for all students, everywhere.


You can support our teacher coaching program in central Africa by donating to EduCorps.
Or, if you live in the Washington, D.C. area- come to our Silent Auction Benefit this Saturday!!


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This entry was posted on November 1, 2013 by in teaching, travel.
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