Co-facilitate Training Program for Teacher Interns

Activity/project background

Partner: Global Teachers Institute (GTI) (Local NGO)

The Global Teachers Institute (GTI) is a teacher development network of educators, schools, and organizations committed to developing high-quality teachers through school-based initial teacher education programs, international exchanges, and collaborative platforms.

GTI encompasses four projects: the Future Leaders Program, the USA Internship Program, the TWA (Teach with Africa) Fellowship, and the GTI Axis Summit. The programs seek to develop a new generation of highly capable educators by immersing pre-service teachers full-time in schools. The program also seeks to provide in-service teachers with experiences to improve their own teaching practice, instructional leadership skills, and mentoring abilities. GTI recognizes the crucial need for improving reading skills among primary school children, especially in South Africa, where the PIRLS (Progress in International Reading Literacy Study) results indicate a significant reading crisis. GTI seeks a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to support their Future Leaders (student teachers) by assisting in co-developing and co-facilitating training sessions to equip these pre-service teachers with knowledge, skills, and tools to effectively teach reading for meaning with the intention of overcoming reading challenges in communities upon their integration in schools as qualified teachers.

Global Teachers Institute has not previously worked with a Peace Corps Volunteer or a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSP). They understand that the role of a VSPP is very different than a two-year Volunteer.

Virtual service engagement and tasks

The VSPP will engage in the following tasks, in collaboration with their Host Country Partners:

• Co-train teacher interns, focusing on the theoretical foundations of reading comprehension, effective strategies, and best practices for teaching reading for meaning
• With teacher interns, co-design innovative instructional materials, techniques, and resources that cater to the diverse needs of primary school children
• Guide teacher interns in adopting student-centered teaching methods that encourage active participation, critical thinking, and independent reading
• Collaborate with GTI management to monitor the progress of teacher interns and support in conducting periodic evaluations to assess the effectiveness of the program

This engagement is expected to be approximately 20 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 on Fridays, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. South African standard time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to WhatsApp, email, or Zoom 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 education

Experience: Teaching experience

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: Master’s degree in education

Technical Skills:
• Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication
• Familiarity with ESL teaching/training and/or Literacy Skills

• 3 years of experience with elementary and/or middle School teaching
• Experience in teacher training

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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