National Center for Teacher Professional Development, under the Teacher and School Director Professional Development Project initiated by "Millennium Challenge Account - Georgia" has launched pilot trainings of the first module - "Student-centered learning environment features" (12 hours) of the long-term five-credit general professional skills course "Student-centered teaching approaches” designed for teachers.
The main objective of the pilot trainings is to test the modules in practice and if necessary, adapt them. The training process is monitored and assessed by local and foreign experts. After the pilot, the trainings will be discussed in focus groups and as a result, the final version of the training module and reading materials will be developed.
After the completion of the pilot, the project will provide trainings for trainers and trainers will be selected to conduct this particular module.
Teacher trainings will start in autumn 2016 and until 2019, step by step, all practicing 7-12 grade public school teachers of exact and natural sciences, geography and English language will be able to attend them. The process will involve up to 20 000 teachers. Under the project, ethnic minority teachers will be able to participate in the trainings, who will be provided with translated training materials and Russian, Armenian and Azerbaijani trainers will be retrained.
At the first stage, teachers will be trained in student-centered teaching basic skills and in 2017-2018 they will have the opportunity to take a relevant school subject module methodology course involving "active learning". In the framework of the project, in order to effectively promote the use of laboratories during the training among teachers teaching natural sciences, the "laboratory" training will be provided in two stages - the first stage of the training will cover the laboratory use safety issues. With the support of Millennium Challenge Account and in order to maintain the sustainability of the process, materials are being developed and trainers will be retrained by foreign consultants for the beginning of 2016-2017 academic year.
Taking part in the trainings will enable teachers to accumulate credit points under the Teacher Induction, Professional Development and Career Advancement Scheme, which will enhance their professional development and competence growth.
Teacher and School Director Professional Development project has been functioning since 2016 under the second $140 million Compact signed between the US government's Millennium Challenge Corporation and the Government of Georgia. The project was initiated by the "Millennium Challenge Account - Georgia" and implemented by a qualified team of education specialists and experts of the National Center for Teacher Professional Development. The technical expertise and support for the project is provided by the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX) Consulting Group.