Supporting the next generation of teachers is an important part of our strategy and a key focus of the Ghana government.
In 2012 there were just seven institutions of higher education accredited to provide courses in Early Childhood Education. Today there are five universities and 23 colleges accredited, a testament to just how committed the Ghana government is to improving the quality of early years’ education.
Our work supports student teachers and higher education institutions in a number of ways. Firstly, we work with university/college lecturers to share play-based teaching expertise.
Secondly, we work with colleges/universities to develop physical Centres of Excellence on or near each campus. These Centres of Excellence are model play-based kindergarten classrooms or full schools, complete with learning materials and resources for student teachers to train in.
Finally, we ensure that student teachers can practice their teaching through placements in play-based kindergarten schools. We support teachers in these best practice schools to coach and mentor the student teachers.
The ultimate aim of the programme is to ensure that student teachers are taught the theory of the play-based curriculum in the best possible way and have places to practice what they have learnt. This will ensure that when they qualify, they’re experienced in how to deliver play-based teaching, having had plenty of practical support during their studies.
We’re pleased to have trained 1,113 student teachers to date, and we’ve completed three Centres of Excellence at the University of Winneba, at OLA College of Education and at Holy Child College of Education. A lot more exciting work ahead!