Bridge Liberia MD outlines progress at Bridge supported Schools
Bridge Liberia continues to make progress in supporting the Government of Liberia in the primary education sector. Bridge, which is the Government’s biggest and main partner in the Liberia Education Advancement Program (LEAP) supports 171 Schools in 11 of Liberia’s 15 counties. Students at these schools’ amount to over 37,000.
With the use of technology and over 35 dedicated regional supervisors across the country, Bridge Liberia successfully monitors and supports teachers and ensures they deliver a high quality standardized curriculum approved by the Ministry of Education.
Teachers at Bridge Liberia supported schools are provided teaching tablets which daily lessons are uploaded to and monitored by supervisors on a daily basis. These lessons are designed specifically to ensure that children can understand the curriculum and learn. Principals of these schools also track these teachers via a programmed smartphone; looking at attendance and lesson completion.
“At the beginning of the school day, the principal has to come earlier than the teachers and the students. The principal has the mother tool. It monitors all the tablets that the teachers on campus use. So those principals know when all the teachers come to school and when they leave. Which is a form of tracking attendance, monitoring and supervision. Like that, we know what the teachers go through and the lessons they are preparing in accordance with the Ministry of Education curriculum, and as the lessons are going through, we can now track how far they have gone in breaking down the lesson for the students for the day.” said Gbovadeh Gbilia.
Bridge Liberia Managing Director GG Gbovadeh Gbiia, is very articulate about Bridge Liberia activities over the period during an interview in Monrovia, stated further that while Bridge Liberia is focused on academic learning outcomes of the students they are serving, they also believe the welfare of children at these schools will immensely contribute to their overall development.
According to him that is why Bridge conducts routine safeguarding training for teachers at all Bridge supported schools, which is currently ongoing simultaneously across the country. The safeguarding training is meant to educate and remind teachers and all Bridge Liberia staff about the pivotal role they have to play in ensuring students are protected and understanding and enforcing student safety at a school and at the community level.
The outcome of all these interventions by Bridge Liberia over the period has resulted in a significant improvement in learning outcomes across Bridge Liberia supported schools. In a Gold standard study, students supported in Bridge Liberia programme were found to benefit by an equivalent of 2.5 years more of learning in just 3 years as compared to a regular public school. Gbovadeh Gbilia attests that this improvement is commented on by parents in the communities who say their children are now confident and articulate; helping them with reading and maths.
As schools are about to close due to the COVID 19 pandemic, Bridge Liberia will be running an at home learning program to keep students abreast with learning materials throughout the vacation period. This follows on from materials and ideas that were used effectively since the outbreak of the pandemic across the country.
Bridge Liberia model for the at home learning program is teaching by radio and an interactive and educative sms delivered by the GSM companies.
These strategies were implemented successfully last vacation period with both parents and students appreciating said gesture. Bridge Liberia intends to implement this same model which has proven to be very impactful and useful to at home learning.