We had a meeting yesterday at the Department of Education with teachers from the two pilot schools, officials from the Department of Education, and OLE Nepal. The meeting was also attended by an official from District Education Office where the pilot is being launched. Seven teachers and administrators from Bashuki School and Biswamitra School pledged their support and cooperation, and ensured full participation from all stakeholders including school administration, and school management committee. They were visibly pleased that the Department had picked their schools to pilot the project.
During the meeting, we briefed them about the project and our plan to use the schools as models when we expand the project to more schools and districts later this year. They understood that their roles were vital in the long term success of OLPC in Nepal. We had long discussions about the preparations that need to take place between now and the launch in mid-April. Few teachers put forth their concerns about safety and security of equipments, adequate teacher preparation, networking, etc. We informed them that there will be an extensive teacher preparation program including 4 days of residential training, followed by 3 days of onsite training. We decided that the residential training should take place from March 29 till April 1. After the residential training, the teachers will return to their school communities where they will hold interaction programs with parents and communities to make them aware of the OLPC project. During the interaction, they will discuss the roles of the parents, and answer questions from the communities. We thought that it is best to have teachers interact with the communities and educate them about the program, with minimal interventions from our organization.
The Department of Education and District Education Office reiterated their full support for the program, and expressed their interest in using the lessons learned during this first phase in the larger implementation of the project in the future.