Change Is Only Possible When Everyone Does Their Part

Като

For me, quality education is a key factor for the development of a society. Modern education is built and reformed by motivated people who are not afraid of change, of experimenting in the classroom, and believe in every child's potential. It was precisely such people that I discovered in Teach for Bulgaria as early as in 2015 when I applied for the program. Five years on, I am part of the Foundation's Executive Board because I see the good change that every member of our community brings about.

We support Teach for Bulgaria because we feel we are in the same boat with all Bulgarians and believe we need to help one another. We think we need to provide an impetus for students and young people, because they will build the future of Bulgaria.

The Challenge We Are Facing

Bulgaria faces a serious demographic crisis and cannot afford to leave any children behind. Yet over the past few years all student-level indicators in the country point toward the negative. Enrollment has been declining and learning eroding even before the pandemic, with students from disadvantaged backgrounds disproportionately affected. The pandemic is expected to result in higher drop-out rate, significant learning loss, and worsening learning poverty. Recent data suggests that students feel less positive about their future, self-esteem, and their ability to deal with problems. Short of a major intervention, Bulgaria is on course to having a generation that lacks essential cognitive and socio-emotional skills and is held back by learned helplessness. This amounts to squandering the country’s human capital that is essential for developing a vibrant market economy and a resilient, democratic civil society. 

At the same time formal qualification, while non-negotiable, still does not seem to correlate with quality instruction. Novice teachers appear unprepared for the challenges of teaching and drop out at high rates, suggesting the need to radically improve initial teacher training. The evidence points that continuous professional qualification and development does not have an impact on teaching & learning outcomes. Meanwhile, studies show that Bulgarian teachers’ instructional practice is based on outdated methods, negatively affecting student learning. Furthermore, this surplus of qualified candidates is associated with significant waste and inefficiencies and does not seem to make a significant impact on the demographic composition or teaching competence of Bulgaria’s teacher workforce. 

Ineffective teaching practice, high attrition, and aging workforce are all testament to the need for better human capital planning & human resource management practices in the education system.

20%

of all children who start first grade do not speak Bulgarian as a first language

90%

of beginning teachers leave the profession after three years in school

29%

of all principals have never completed a training program or a course on school management

15 800

students dropped out of school in 2019/2020

of students in Bulgaria are functionally illiterate
0%
of all Bulgarian teachers are under 34
0%

Reach

We at Teach for Bulgaria believe that a positive change that affects all students in Bulgarian education is only possible if all of us in the system work together, building on our perspectives and experiences. Since 2010, we have been continuously building a strong community of current participants, program alumni, and various partners from all sectors. We are convinced that this is the way to introduce sustainable policies and practices for improving education for every child in Bulgaria.

2010

21 teachers in one program

2024

1700+ teachers in our programs
0%
13 partner schools
560+ partner schools
0%
1 program
3 programs, international projects, and many partnerships
0%

We are able to grow and search for the most effective ways to support Bulgarian teachers and students thanks to people like you who see education for what it is - a crucial social responsibility.

Our areas of impact

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