To implement successful and sustainable interventions that improve early-grade learning outcomes in Cambodia, it takes a team beyond just our staff. Our partners, like local organization Bandos Komar, are an integral part of this team. World Education and Bandos Komar are working together to implement the literacy component of the new early grade learning package developed by Cambodia’s Ministry of Education, Youth, and Sport (MoEYS).
Operating since 1989, Bandos Komar is dedicated to supporting the human resource development and livelihood improvement of individuals and communities in Cambodia. They provide youth with quality and equitable education so that they can become agents of change in their communities and have confidence beyond the classroom.
Through our McGovern-Dole Food for Education (FFE) project, Bandos Komar provides training to teachers on how to deliver the new MoEYS grade 1 and 2 early grade reading package, and trains coaches to support teachers, school-based mentors and school directors during implementation. They also assist coaches, school directors, MoEYS mentors, and the District Office of Education on conducting effective school visits and class observations to assess teacher performance.
Through technical assistance, we are strengthening the capacity of Bandos Komar to continue to grow as an organization, establish support systems for school directors and teachers in the roll out, and administer monitoring tools using tablets. We are also providing training to Bandos Komar on workshop facilitation, school observations, and coaching quality assurance. Partnering on this project is not only building the capacity of Bandos Komar, but is promoting sustainability as the organization is building credibility by working alongside the government at provincial, district, and school levels.
As a result of our assistance, Bandos Komar leadership has noted improvements in their organizational capacity, such as improved knowledge of the early grade reading package and its application, increased collaboration with school directors, the District Office of Education, and the Provincial Office of Education, improved project monitoring, and engagement with parents through technology. Bandos Komar has also expanded its target areas to increase access to quality education across Cambodia.
The communities where FFE is active are also seeing improvements, according to Bandos Komar staff. Their leadership recognized an increase of learning materials and support for parents and caregivers for students to continue learning at home, and improved student abilities in five core reading skills: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. They also noticed that students and teachers are more engaged and interactive, and teachers are enjoying applying their skills through the implementation of the reading package. These results show the direct impact of more streamlined interventions from the Bandos Komar team.
Due to the success of this roll out, MoEYS plans to expand the early grade reading package to other areas of the country. The expertise and resources of World Education and Bandos Komar applied to these efforts are promising for this expansion and for ensuring quality education is a continued priority across Cambodia.