More than 25 teachers selected from Adamawa and Gombe states attended the Basic Level Assessment Development Workshop on July 17 by the Atiku Center.
It was a part of the Strengthening Education in North-East Nigeria (SENSE) Project.
The USAID-sponsored initiative being implemented by AUN is a collaboration with the ministries of education and Universal Basic Education of both states.
The project’s School Improvement Specialist, Elizabeth Raymond, welcomed participants to the workshop on behalf of the SENSE Chief of Party, Audu Liman.
Mrs. Raymond said, "Anytime you think about the project, I want you to think of it as a project that has come to support you or as a project that has come to strengthen you.
"We are here to support you in teacher training and instructional materials development. We are going to do a lot of teacher training. I strongly believe that the quality of teachers affects the quality of students.
"We will be seeing you in your schools. We will be inviting you for training regularly."
She added that the essence of the workshop was to know what area they would need to come in before they start the teacher training and support as well as see the achievement level of learners during the course of the program implementation. The participants who were selected by the State Universal Education Boards (SUBEBs) are considered the best in the respective states. Their task was to develop questions that cover the curriculum in both Mathematics and English for Primary 2, 3, 4, and 5. The team was divided into twos.
"We want to be able to know whether all our efforts in these three years truly had an impact on the quality of the learners," said Mrs. Raymond who has had over ten years in primary school administration.
The questions will be used by the two states yearly to access the quality of the learners. She maintained that the assessment is not intended to judge the teachers or the learners.
"It is for us to know how to support and strengthen you. We want to help you in any way that we can. The questions will be standardized. This means that the questions can be used elsewhere and those administering them will still get the type of results they want. We want the test items to be so good that other states in Nigeria or NGOs will use it to test learners' achievement in Math and English language".
The project is also in partnership with two colleges of education in each of both states as well as the Adamawa and Gombe State universities. The international universities also partnering in the project are the Kent State University and Columbia University, both in the United States.
On the following day after the workshop, some more persons came for the further development of the test materials. They were officers from the two colleges of education, and state universities, measurement, and evaluation specialists as well as quality assurance specialist from SUBEB and Ministry of education and education resource centers. They came to validate the questions.
"Their task was to ensure that it met all the characteristics of a good question."
SENSE targets the capacity improvement of 100 education managers, an upgrade in the teaching skills of 5,000 teachers and improved education outcomes of 200,000 primary school children in 200 schools from 2019 to 2022.
Reported by Omorogbe Omorogiuwa