Skardu: Successes and Challenges of EDIP discussed at seminar

Zaheer Abbas

Skardu: The Aga Khan University – Professional Development Centre North is one of the leading training institutes which have been playing a pivotal role in improving the quality of education through promotion of teaching best practices, capacity building of schools and teachers in the Gilgit-Baltistan region since its inception almost 16 years ago.

Since 2010, AKU-PDCN is implementing a project Educational Development and Improvement Program (EDIP) in Gilgit-Baltistan with generous funding from Aus-Aid. The project adapted the Whole School Improvement Program (WSIP) model and focused on improving the quality of teaching and learning, developing leadership and management skills, curriculum enrichment and staff development, building and resources management, students’ social, moral development and health education, and community participation in the schools.

In continuity of its activity, PDCN Educational Development and Improvement Program Dissemination Seminar District Skardu titled “Contribution, Successes and Challenges” was held at Boys High Schools Shigar Skardu today. Mr, Sharifullah and his team lead the Seminar while Skardu District Education Officials including Deputy Director for Wemon, District Inspector of Schools Mr. Muhammad Raiz, and AssistantEducation Officers participated in the Seminar. Besides, teachers, community members including mothers and other notables contributed to the seminar. Mr. Sharifullah addressed the gathering and explained what were the successes and challenges of the five year EDIP project. He shared that EDIP worked for the improvement of schools including teachers’ capacity building, human and material resources development, and community mobilization and so on. He further explained that almost 100 teachers of 8 schools of district Skardu were trained in content and pedagogy related aspects at different levels together with two AKU-IED EDIP sponsored graduates, a large number of ADE-ELM PDCN EDIP sponsored graduates. In addition, schools were upgrades with high profile computes with internet facility, library books, science laboratories equipments, furniture, construction of ECD classrooms, toilets, stationary material, teaching kits and so on. Similarly, a full time Professional Development was appointed at each cluster who was responsible to observe classes on daily basis and give feedback to the teachers to held them to improve their teaching and learning processes. The PDT took different training sessions on weekly basis for the teachers on different generic areas for the last five years.

In explaining the areas of key achievements, Mr. Sharifullah was quite confident in sharing that the schools have improved their annual results, students’ enrolments, students’ and teachers’ daily attendance, hygiene, culture of cooperation and collaboration in teaching and learning, best use of resources, roles of SMCs and MSGs, teachers’ content and pedagogical knowledge and so on. He endorsed his ideas that all the stakeholders must work for the sustainability of the improvements and innovations made within the schools and community by EDIP.

Representing the community, Mr. Hassan Khan Amacha (former secretary health) also discussed the active role of PDCN in promoting quality education in District Skardu. He shared his gratitude to EDIP and PDCN on successful completion of the project.

The Officials of the Education Department District Skardu, including Female Deputy Director and Deputy Inspector of Schools also thanked PDCN team for their helping hands in raising the standards of education in the district. They hoped that PDCN will keep their support continue in future.

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