Improving quality of education for refugees through training for incentive teachers

Nguenyyiel Refugee camp, Gambella region

By Christine Wanjala
26 October 2020
UNICEF Ethiopia/2019/ChristineWanjala
Gach Tut Reath is a teacher who has been working in Mat Primary School since 2017.

Gach Tut Reath is a teacher who has been working in Mat Primary School since 2017. He was born in 1990 in Jonglay State in South Sudan around Nyirol area. He started his primary education in Uganda until grade 8 when he moved to Turkana, Kenya where he continued his secondary education up to grade 10.

After coming to Ethiopia, he joined Plan International Ethiopia as an incentive teacher in Nguenyyiel Refugee Camp and was assigned to Mat Primary School as a Nuer language teacher. Although he was teaching, Gach did not possess the skills, knowledge and attitudes required in the teaching profession. He was not delivering the lesson using the necessary methodology and approach.

In 2018, with financial support from Education Cannot Wait, UNICEF provided an opportunity for refugee incentive teachers like Gach to enroll in a certificate and diploma programme under the auspices of the Regional Education Bureau, the Agency for Refugee and Returnee Affairs, and the Gambella Teachers Education and Health Sciences College. Compared with short-term training programmes provided in the past five years, this programme was a consolidated, need-based, cost-efficient, and long-term solution to training refugee teachers.

Gach joined the certificate program in 2018 and graduated in 2019 after two consecutive summer courses. He is now a qualified teacher and joins a small group of qualified but dedicated teachers at Ngueyyile Refugee Camp.

“Now I am confident and qualified to deliver my lesson in a better way,” he says.

Following his qualification, he is preparing lesson plans properly using the standard format and delivering lessons using appropriate teaching methodologies. His confidence has also improved and he feels equipped with the necessary teaching qualification. His efficiency has also increased on utilization of time, resources, managing the children in and outside the classroom, and maintaining teamwork for the benefit of children. Gach is now hoping for a chance to upgrade his skills to the next level of training and become more qualified as a teacher.