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Article 20/07/2023

EDT’s Building Learning Foundations team co-hosts successful East Africa Learning policy Forum

Last month, our Building Learning Foundations (BLF) team was delighted to co-host the East Africa Learning policy Forum alongside the Rwandan Ministry of Education, welcoming officials from the Kenyan, Ugandan and Ethiopian ministries of education.

The two-day event in Kigali was officiated by Rwanda’s Minister of State for Primary and Secondary Education Hon. Gaspard Twagirayezu, with scene-setting remarks from EDT’s Regional Director for Sub-Saharan Africa, Richard King and Senior Consultant Giiti Wassie, as well as Tihtina Zenebre Gebre from the World Bank.  

The first day featured a series of evidence-sharing workshops focused on making accelerated education work at scale, drawing on the work of BLF in Rwanda. Delegates included the Director General of Rwanda Basic Education Board, and key development partners in Rwanda, such as UNICEF, FCDO, World Bank and USAID. 

On day two, delegates attending the forum visited three schools supported by BLF, demonstrating the innovative programmes that have been improving learning outcomes in English and mathematics for students at primary level. At each school, they observed an English and mathematics lesson, participated in a Professional Learning Community of school leaders and attended a District Training Team meeting – a forum whose objective is to sustain BLF initiatives beyond the lifetime of the programme.  

One of the delegates, Dr Samuel Marigat, the County Director of the Teacher Service Commission in Kenya said: “I am impressed by how BLF has been able to design and deliver mathematics teaching and learning materials that are well displayed in the classroom. This is something in Kenya we also want to do and I believe we should emulate Rwanda’s example.”


Children in classroom in Rwanda


Dr Jane Egau, from Uganda, said: “It was interesting to see how teachers are using English as a medium of instruction, which was recently introduced in Rwanda’s lower primary education. The teachers need a lot of support to improve their language proficiency. We also liked the platform of school leaders which we think is very efficient and we can learn from it.” 

Later in the day, the delegation was given a guided tour of the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre, which details the history of Rwanda’s 1994 genocide, which claimed over one million lives.  

In his closing remarks, Minister Twagirayezu thanked all the participants for being in Rwanda, and for and sharing their experiences on how best to improve teaching and learning in schools. “I would like to thank Education Development Trust for coming up with the concept for this event, bringing together like-minded countries who have the same drive and determination to support improvement for children as we do here,” he said. 

We were delighted to be part of this important event and look forward to future opportunities to work with ministries and partners to improve learning outcomes around the world.  

To find out more about our Building Learning Foundations programme and its impact, please click here.