Support Technical Training in Literacy Intervention

Eligibility

Open to all RPCVs

Activity/project background

The Toledo District Education Center (DEC) is the arm of the Belize Ministry of Education (MoE) in the Toledo District that provides a wide range of education services to local schools. One of the main services is support to schools in the areas of teacher training.

In the 2021-2022 school year, after many schools resumed for face-to-face or hybrid learning, schools were tasked to administer literacy and numeracy diagnostic tests to determine areas of focus. The results are periodically submitted to the District Education Office. The immediately requested expertise is to interpret the data and determine next steps in providing teachers with the skills to conduct targeted intervention is lacking.

The exploration of participating in Peace Corps Virtual Service commenced in January 2022 with the Ministry of Education and the Response Program counterparts after the site history review revealed that Toledo did not meet the medical clearance for the placement of Peace Corps Response Volunteers (PCRVs) for the present literacy intervention project. Thus, the Ministry expressed interest in utilizing virtual service as a model of service for literacy intervention support and an equally strong request for numeracy intervention support. After collecting substantial data, the Ministry of Education requested support in learning how to:
• Analyze data to identify areas for intervention;
• Develop data-driven literacy/numeracy intervention plans; and
• Facilitate professional development for trainer of trainers in areas of literacy and numeracy intervention.

While the identified areas of intervention include both literacy and numeracy, Toledo District Education Center is requesting a VSPP to focus on the literacy component first to ensure the tasks can be completed within the 22-week timeframe.

Virtual service engagement and tasks

The VSPP will engage in the following tasks, in collaboration with Host Country Partners:
• Co-analyze the results of the Belize Diagnostic Assessment Test (BDAT), Standard 1 Literacy Screening, and End of Year Assessments to identify priority areas of intervention.
• Co-develop data-driven literacy intervention plans for five schools.
• Co-facilitate 5 ninety-minute professional development sessions for a pool of teachers in literacy intervention who will eventually serve as trainer of trainers.
This engagement is expected to be approximately 22 weeks. VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week.

Meetings between VSPPs and Host Country Counterparts will take place during normal office hours (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.), Belize time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Zoom, WhatsApp and email for regular communication and collaboration.

Per the Child Protection Code of Conduct, when engaging online with minors (0-18), two adults must be present.

Optional additional activities

The Peace Corps mission is to promote world peace and friendship by fulfilling three goals:

  1. To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women.
  2. To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.
  3. To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Goal 1 will be achieved through the VSPP's engagement and completion of the above tasks. The counterpart and VSPP may also choose to identify an activity that aligns with Goal 2. Additionally, the VSPP may identify a Goal 3 activity to implement during their engagement. See recommendations and tools for Goal 3 activities.

Essential qualifications

Education: Bachelor’s degree in early childhood education or related field

Experience: Experience in collaborating with teachers to analyze test results and develop strategies to improve students’ academic achievement

Intercultural skills and motivation: Flexible, strong cross-cultural agility, high tolerance for ambiguity, able to work independently, resourceful, creative, and genuinely motivated and capable to serve virtually

Desired qualifications

Education:
• M.Ed. in early childhood education with specialization in early grade intervention
• Literacy interventionist or early grade interventionist

Technical Skills: Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

Experience:
• At least 3 years’ experience working with primary-aged students in an educational setting
• Classroom teaching experience
• Experienced in Response to Intervention or Multi-tiered System structure
• Experience in working in the launch phase of projects or programs
• Experienced in developing workshops for teachers
• Experienced in collecting data to successfully support literacy and numeracy goals in classroom settings
• Experience in literacy, numeracy intervention strategies or behavior management
• Experienced in mentoring and coaching teachers to create and implement intervention plans

Partner background

Name: Ministry of Education, Toledo District Education Center

Type of entity: Government

Mission and goals:

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Technology (MoECST) of Belize is charged with the responsibility of ensuring that all Belizeans are given an opportunity to acquire those knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for their own personal development and for full and active participation in the development of the nation.

Terms and conditions of engagement

VSPPs will be engaging with the host country partner, in coordination with Peace Corps post staff, remotely from the US. They should have access to a computer, internet, and telephone in order to enable direct engagement with the Peace Corps overseas office and the Host Country Counterpart assigned by the host country partner.

Orientation with the host country partner will be provided, within the designated virtual service hours, during the first week of virtual service via an online presentation and discussion. The host country partner will provide an overview of its organization, the local context, and how they envision collaborating with the VSPP.

The VSPP will have regular check-ins with their counterpart and bi-weekly check-ins with Peace Corps staff. Spending unstructured time with counterparts can be critical to relationship-building and is encouraged through activities such as coffee chats and informal calls within the weekly 5-15 hours.

Engagement-specific safety and security

The VSPP will receive an orientation on Peace Corps’ Child Protection Policy and how it relates to online engagement along with IT security best practices. The VSPP will be expected to follow safety and security guidelines for online engagement to ensure their safety and that of the Host Country Partner and their counterpart, and any beneficiaries of the engagement.

Supervision requirements

The VSPP will report to a designated Peace Corps staff member. The VSPP will be expected to abide by the Virtual Service Pilot Participant and Donation Agreement and Participant Principles of Engagement. The VSPP will also be expected to check in with the designated host country counterpart as assigned by the host county partner.


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