Government has made significant strides towards achieving Education for All, and now gears have shifted toward ensuring that all Rwandan children are taught by a competent teacher to ensure quality education.
This was the message delivered by the Minister for Education, Eugene Mutimura, during the national celebrations for the World Teachers’ Day that was held in Rwamagana District on Friday.
The day, which has been observed annually since 2002, was marked under the theme; “Right to Education means Right Qualified Teacher,” while at the national level it is, “A Professional and Competent Teacher is a Foundation to Quality Education.”
Both themes show that not only is it a right for every child to have an education, but they also need a qualified and competent teacher, according to Minister Mutimura said.
Aloysie Girabawe (2nd right), who emerged the best teacher nationwide in 2018, is awarded a motorbike, a flat screen TV and a laptop, as Education Minister Eugene Mutimura (right) and other officials congratulate her during the celebrations of the World Teachers’ Day in Rwamagana District yesterday.
Appreciating the role of teachers in the lives of Rwandans in different ways, the minister urged them to always seek to build their capacity so that students can have the good education they deserve.
“A professional teacher that every child needs is one that is qualified and competent, and one who teaches a child well so that that child succeeds,” he said.
He urged the educationists to ensure students are taught civic education, through which values based on the Rwandan culture will be imparted to them.
“Building our teachers’ capacity is among the Government’s responsibilities and the Ministry of Education’s in particular,” he said, adding “because their contribution is unmatched in education and we recognise that.”
Many teachers have been trained, especially on new Competency Based Curriculum (CBC), he said.
He also emphasised empowering teachers for them to properly discharge their duties, and that in this context, over 400 teachers had been given computers to enable them to teach ICT to their students, and also use them to prepare their courses.
He said that, progressively, more will get the computers.
“Government has always promoted ICT in the education, there are also 692 secondary schools that have been given 100 computers each under the ‘Smart Classrooms’ programme, and all of the teachers are taught,” he said.
Rwanda is among countries that achieved Millennium Goal number two; education for all.
“We have a tough task to keep promoting Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially goal number four; ‘bringing quality education for all,’” said the minister.
The event was held in Rwamagana because the district outperformed other districts in education services delivery in 2017, according to Rwanda Governance Board’s report on governance.
Best performing teachers recognised
At the event, best performing teachers at national, provincial, district, sector and school levels were given awards designed to transform their lives, support their daily professional lives, and improve teaching and learning outcomes.
The top performing teacher at the national level was awarded a motorbike, a laptop and a flat screen TV, while the provincial award winner received a motorbike and a laptop.
Aloysie Girabawe, 32, a senior six biology teacher at E.S Rukomo SOPEM in Nyagatare District, who was named the best teacher at the national level, attributed the feat to “ample preparation”.
She said she has to put in a lot of time for her to give the best to her students, much of it not through the formal training she acquired at the teachers’ college.
Girabawe said that she does a lot of research and has to even use YouTube to access online tutorials to ensure she gives the best to her students.
“I use video demonstration when necessary, I send them for research in the computer lab, I use 3D image (with projector) so a student sees and understands better than drawing on the blackboard,” she said.
Girabawe, a mother of two who has been a teacher for seven years, said the first advice to fellow teachers is to have passion for their work, and the rest will follow.