To ensure that state schools are able to get all children enrolled, attend regularly and learn well, Lokmitra focuses on whole school development. The core of it is to facilitate parents, teachers & children to work together as a learning group to face school-level challenges and work for school improvement. This School Activity System of Collaborative learning among Teachers, children, and parents is a system for promoting school improvement from the nurturing Community of Learner for Education of all Children.
The Academic Support Package for school is aimed at ensuring foundational reading and numeracy skills of all children, especially those who have completed two years of schooling. This consists of a lesson plan, learning materials (workbook, activity) for multi-level teaching-learning in mixed-ability groups, and the same ability group. Academic Support Package includes add-on, covering life skills, relating school knowledge to local living knowledge, school gardening related science, etc.
Periodic assessment and review in teachers’ meetings are included in the system. This creates an opportunity for teachers to reflect on the diverse learning of children and question some of their long-held beliefs about how children will learn. Lokmitra has developed a booklet for teachers to improve their understanding and practice of teaching the Hindi Language in a situation where they are not able to promote reading ability.
There is an Academic Support Package for supplementary learning support to out of school and irregular children to enhance their learning ability and confidence. The focus of developing teaching-learning materials is to make education more relevant and facilitate teaching at the right level with a lot of learning activities.
Support to Schools to improve Quality of Education
Lokmitra has so far supported about 600 schools for 1 to 5 years in 11 rural Blocks and three urban areas in 7 districts of Uttar Pradesh (Raebareli, Jaunpur, Banda, Saharanpur, Lucknow, Pratapgarh & Brabanki. Out of the 200 schools where we have provided pedagogical support through demo classes and provision of suitable learning materials (workbooks, posters, learning games etc). There have been about 20 to 30 percentage point improvement in learning outcomes and attendance in these schools in one academic year. Especial support was given to those children lagging in foundational reading and numeracy abilities.
Lokmitra School Education Improvement Package aims at whole school development by facilitating parents, teachers & children to work together as a learning group. This is a system for promoting improvement in school from within, where children learn together, teachers also learn together as an educational professional, and even parents and citizens learn together.
To enhance the capacity of teachers, during 2005-07, Lokmitra conceptualized a voluntary learning forum of teachers which meets at regular interval to share their school level experiences among themselves and promote their learning/knowledge. In this way not only good practices get shared, peer-reviewed, but also a culture of participatory learning gets promoted. In the next few years, it was taken to about 10 other Blocks of three districts, reaching out to about 600 teachers. This practice was shared in the meeting of the Knowledge Commission. District level (in 5 districts) and State Level Good Practice sharing workshops of teachers were organized to promote these ideas as a way to enhance the motivation and learning of teachers. Now Lokmitra promotes teacher peer learning also at the school level.