Malawi Broadcasting Corporation

Stakeholders hail FAWEMA’s GRP Project

Educationists in the country have praised the Forum for African Women Educationalists Malawi Chapter (FAWEMA) for its Gender Responsive Pedagogy (GRP) Project, which is being implemented in the country’s primary schools and teacher training colleges. They believe it is making a significant difference in the education sector.

Wesley Chabwera, Executive Director of FAWEMA, explained that in the early 1990s, research highlighted that girls were lagging behind in education due to gender-biased language, classroom management, and teaching materials that were not girl-child friendly.

He said: “This realization led us to develop a tool called Gender Responsive Pedagogy (GRP) to address these issues by building the capacity of teachers.”

According to Chabwera, FAWEMA’s initiative aims to create equality among students by training teachers to recognize and mitigate gender biases in their attitudes, perceptions, and classroom practices.

In her remarks, Maggie Madimbo, Chairperson of the FAWEMA Board, emphasized the success of their efforts, noting, “We have trained teachers in all public teacher training colleges and several key districts. The initiative has seen a positive change in teachers’ attitudes and behaviors, with more female teachers taking on leadership roles and increased classroom participation from girls.”

Commenting on the same, Jonathan Kaboni, Headteacher at Kayoyo Community Day Secondary School in Ntchisi District, shared his firsthand experience: “We have seen positive feedback from teachers and students alike after the training sessions. There’s more interaction between the girl-child and the teachers in a classroom setup,” said Kaboni.

Noriah Nchingula, Principal ODEL Officer in the Ministry of Education, highlighted the ministry’s commitment to digitalisation, saying, “Our digitalised curriculum ensures learning continues despite disruptions like COVID-19,” and underlined the project’s role in creating a resilient education system.

FAWEMA emphasized that the Gender Responsive Pedagogy initiative, now expanded through digital tools, represents a significant stride towards educational equality in Malawi. The ongoing efforts and community involvement promise a brighter, more inclusive future for all learners.

With funding from the MasterCard Foundation and UNICEF, the project will support marginalised learners, offering bridging programmes to help them qualify for tertiary education, aiming to enroll 1,500 learners over seven years.

#MBC Digital

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