Last July marked the first anniversary of the launch of the Strengthening Teacher Education Program in Cambodia (STEPCam), a three years initiative designed by UNESCO and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports (MoEYS).
STEPCam is funded through the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and UNESCO Capacity Development for Education Program (CapED), to support the MoEYS in improving the quality of teaching and learning in the early grades. STEPCam is the third consecutive GPE grant for Cambodia since 2008.
Overall, through STEPCam’s support, the MoEYS will deliver better, more engaging and effective continuous professional development) to more than 4,000 teachers, teacher educators and almost 3,000 key school staff members across Cambodia.
While the STEPCam targets teachers’ continuous professional development, learners, especially from disadvantaged areas and groups, are also key beneficiaries. Over 225,900 primary students of grades 1 -2 will directly benefit from STEPCam, thereby directly contributing to Cambodia’s efforts towards achievement of SDG 4: ensuring inclusive and equitable education and lifelong learning opportunities for all by 2030.
Through a phased and holistic approach spanning four key components, STEPCam aims to improve early grade learning, with the overarching objective of supporting the implementation of the Cambodia’s Education Strategic Plan 2019-2023.
At the core of the program is the institutionalized INSET (in-service training) professional development of teachers (Component 2), which entails capacity development to design, develop and provide innovative learning and teaching materials for Khmer subject, and teacher guides for maths (grades 1 & 2). The initiative promotes the adoption of a new student-centered approach, fostering an inquisitive mindset and active participation.