28.05.2015 - UNESCO Office in Dakar

Proposals to move forward pre-service teacher training in Guinea-Bissau


Pre-service teacher training is a major concern in Guinea-Bissau and since 2009, UNESCO has worked hand in hand with various governments to improve teacher qualifications and set up a system for the management of learning outcomes.

A two day workshop was organized in the capital Bissau on 14-15 May 2015, by UNESCO through the National Institute for Education Development (INDE) to reflect the best scenarios for pre-service teacher training addressing existing gaps.

“The work being completed by UNESCO is worth highlighting, as there was an evident need to assure a holistic approach to pre-service teacher training programs,” said Manuel Malam Jafono, Director of Distance Learning attaché to African Virtual University, Ministry of Education Guinea-Bissau at the workshop.

Concrete steps to move forward

During the two days participants (i) analyzed the current situation of pre-service training in Guinea-Bissau; (ii) exposed national experiences of main partners and teacher training institutions and; (iii) reviewed the proposed pre-service teacher training curriculum plan for teachers of 1st and 2nd cycle of basic education (1-6 grades).

Participants included representatives from the Ministry of Education, Office of the Secretary of State for Higher Education, Amilcar Cabral University, various Teacher Training Schools (Unidade Tchico Té, Unidade 17 de Fevereiro…etc), National UNESCO Commission, Camões Institute, UN-UNICEF, UN-WFP, FEC, PLAN International GB, ADPP, African Development Bank, SINAPROF (syndicate), to name a few.

The workshop resulted in three propositions to be submitted to the Minister of Education:

  1. Training for 4 years with strong emphasis on classroom practice (this proposition is mainly directed to first time students which intend to achieve a bachelor’s level diploma on Teaching).
  2. Training for 2 years (intended for in-service teachers in the education system for less than 3 years and received some training. This suggestion serves to strengthen teaching capacity).
  3. Modular training (intended for in-service teachers in the education system at least 5 years who wish to strengthen their capacity and/or gather a specialization in a certain subject).

Specific training programmes will be proposed, accordingly, for the consideration of the Ministry of Education to tackle immediate needs to increase the number of trainers in pre-service teacher training schools; and develop a relevant certified training programme.

UNESCO’s project in Guinea-Bissau is entitled "Improvement of teacher qualification and setting up of a system for the management of learning outcomes", which primarily aims at improving pre-service teacher training quality by revising training programs from teacher training schools in Guinea-Bissau.

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