The training of the third batch of the Model Schools program started in Tryavna.
A month before the start of the new school year, 24 schools from 21 towns and 15 regions began their training in the only training program for school teams, which supports them both to improve their management practices and modernize their teaching methods.
The live trainings, taking place in the town of Tryavna from 15th to 26th August, are part of Teach for Bulgaria’s two-year Model Schools program. They are the first part of a qualification experience that will support school teams to seek an overall transformation of the learning process with a focus on students.
The new schools are participants in the third batch of the program and in the next two years they will go through specialized pedagogical and leadership trainings live and online, they will get to know a variety of resources, tools and materials from Bulgarian classrooms and international experience. Each school will have the opportunity to learn through experience and apply what they learn by adapting it to their context and needs with the support of mentors – experienced teachers, principals and educational experts.
The mentors will visit the schools and help them achieve their goals throughout the program.
“The experience from the first two years of the program gives us confidence that we are on the right track and that schools find benefit, meaning and added value that improves the learning of students, but also of the school teams themselves,” Ivelina Pashova, program manager of Model Schools, shared.
The program is the successor to the successful Education Leadership Academy of America for Bulgaria Foundation and builds on the experience of Teach for Bulgaria in working with teachers and school teams over the past 12 years.
Participation in the trainings and mentoring support are free of charge for all school teams and bring credits for increasing the qualification of pedagogical specialists.
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New regions, diverse challenges and schools
With the new batch of schools, the “Model Schools” program begins work in Gabrovo region for the first time and expands its scope to 22 regions throughout the country.
The new participants in the program span a wide variety of educational institutions – profiles, population size and challenges they face. Among them there are primary, elementary, unified and secondary schools, vocational and profiled high schools, arts schools and a socio-pedagogical boarding school. The program includes schools from the capital, regional cities, but also villages and smaller towns.
The diversity of schools allows for even more active sharing of experience, good practices and ideas between school teams. The opportunity to learn from each other is embedded in the philosophy of the program and aims to promote the dissemination and exchange of successful models and approaches that schools already use in their work.
Trainings in Tryavna in August
The first trainings of the third batch of Model Schools are held live in the town of Tryavna, in two groups, within two weeks from 15th to 18th August and 22nd to 25th August. A major focus of the training modules is exploration of the concept of teaching and student-oriented schooling. Within the framework of the training, teachers and principals go through experiential learning in different points of the city (which is strongly linked to the history of Bulgarian education), study of pedagogical and leadership practices that place the student at the center, familiarization with the goals and tools of the Model Schools program, setting goals and vision for the school and time to build trust with the other schools in the program.
During the school year, the main part of the trainings in the program are conducted in an online and asynchronous format, which additionally allows the pedagogical specialists to develop their skills for working in a remote environment.
Model Schools to date
Teach for Bulgaria started the Model Schools program in the pandemic 2020, and 20 schools graduated successfully in June 2022. At present, 49 more schools and over 300 teachers and principals from all over the country continue their training. 95% of teachers and principals participating in the program say that Model Schools helps the school team work to improve educational outcomes and student well-being, and 91% believe that the program gives them concrete tools and practices to integrate into their work.