QUALITY MATTERS : The Case of Lesotho A presentation prepared by : Phaello Nts’onyane Matsepiso Nts’aba Mamasiphole Setoromo Setungoane Letsatsi Kojoana 03-05 December 2013 OSISA ECDE Conference Pretoria South Africa ECCD Timeline in Lesotho Started in 1972 ECCD unit established in 1985 as project 1995 ECCD unit became part of MOET 1999 NTTs placed in each district 2001 Engagement of four officers for home based programme 2006 reception classes attached to some of primary schools 2007 CECE program started Challenges Inadequate training of ECCD teachers Lack of parental support ECCD treated as business thus poor quality provision Poor infrastructure for ECCD hence quality compromised Low access rates (37.2% in 2012) Irregular monitoring and evaluation Lack of a formal program for under three’s Response to challenges Decentralization of ECCD unit (NTTs -10 , ARTs –100) Countrywide in-service workshops for ECCD teachers/caregivers Attachment of Reception classes to some of primary schools Formalization of training for practising ECCD teachers and caregivers (LCE) Quality initiatives in ECCD - Lesotho 2. LCE CECE training 1. Government support/ commitment 5. Multi-sectorality 3.Development partners (local and ECCD international) 4. In service training (other stakeholders) Lessons Learned ECCD teachers need a lot of support and training Be familiar with new developments in ECCD and technological advancements Efforts are more effective if different agencies/sectors work together Increased advocacy with top management/policy makers Need more ECCD professionals in education sector Successes Institutionalization of preschool teacher training – CECE programme at LCE Evaluation of CECE programme Smooth transition from reception to Grade 1 Draft IECCD policy in place Development of Early Learning and Development Standards document Parenting skills and Home Based Training manuals in place Curriculum for ECCD available Knowledge Attitudes and Practices in place Way Forward After evaluation – diploma programme Establishment of National Resource Centre Expansion of Reception classes Expansion of ECCD services/programmes in the rural areas Regulate and monitor ECCD centres’ establishment Work towards development of a programme for under 3s Conclusion national IECCD policy, with a strong multisectoral approach, is in its final stage of governmental approval. Better policy environment for quality ECCD at all levels Partnerships will continue on advocacy, funds leveraging and evidence-based programming Coordination, monitoring and evaluation will be strengthened for enhanced service delivery “ The real winners in life are the people who look at every situation with an expectation that they can make it work or make it better.” by Barbara Pletcher When we have collectively achieved all of the above dreams and aspirations the children of Lesotho will thank us.