The Innovative Women Teachers program is an initiative implemented by the African Centre for Women, Information and Communications Technology in partnership with Microsoft Corporation and the Government of Kenya’s Ministry of Education with the aim of building the capacity of women teachers in ICT to improve learning outcomes and also address the issues affecting Girl-Child Education in Kenya.
The program is geared towards the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals, and attainment of Education for All (EFA) by reducing the gender gap at every level of education. In addition, the program promotes gender equality and empowerment of women, Achieves universal primary education; Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; Combat HIV/AIDs malaria and other diseases; Reduce child mortality and improve maternal health, all by 2015.
The program is expected to reach 150,000 women primary and secondary school teachers through a phased-stratagem. The program is based on a Trainer of Trainees (ToT) approach in which Bachelor of Education alumnae from various Kenyan universities are trained at the Kenya Institute of Education (K.I.E) and deployed to train women teachers countrywide. The IWT is delivered through a localized Microsoft Digital Literacy curriculum designed to develop the capacities of women teachers to integrate technology into daily teaching and research. The curriculum is divided into three Units namely; ICT Integration in Education, international and national Girl Child Rights, and the Social, Cultural, and Health Issues affecting the Girl Child. At the end of each unit, the teachers are expected to document and share experiences using ICTs through reflective journals. Other components of the program include; conducting residential training for teachers is conducted during school holidays at designated training sites, mainly teacher training colleges; organizing peer-to-peer training by the women teachers who have been trained as well as connecting women teachers who undergo IWT training programme to acquire laptop computers and free application software from Microsoft.
The fruits of our approach
To-date, the program has trained a total of 60 master trainers, who in turn have trained 3,360 women teachers directly during school holidays. The 3,360 teachers who were trained directly have been tasked with training at least 10 peers within 12 months bringing the total number of women teachers trained to-date to 33,600. In addition to the women teachers being tasked to train at least 10 of their peers within 12 months, they are also tasked with serving as role models to the girl children in their schools