Mwanzo Mzuri (A Good Start )
Mwanzo Mzuri intends to ensure that young Tanzanians will be enrolled in high quality and safe pre -primary education, which improves school readiness and supports them to reach their full potential
Poor enrollment and qua1ity of pre- primary education
The early years of a child’s life are the most formative and evidence shows that those people who receive pre-primary education are more likely to perform better at school and reach full potential later in life.
Most primary schools in Tanzania now offer pre- primary education, and enrolment is free and compulsory. While enrolment has increased from 41% in 2012 to 47% in 2016 TEST 2016) enrolment is still limited due to understanding of Early Childhood Development DCD) as well as roles and traditions among parents. Another aspect impacting enrolment is the distance between homes and schools, as many of the younger children are not able to make the journey due to the risks.
Those children who are enrolled in pte-primary schooling are not getting the quality of education they need. Tanzania has no specific budget for pre- primary education so often pre-primary tends to have the least qualified teachers, be low resourced and have poor learning facilities for younger students and classrooms are overcrowded world Bank 2012).
Mwanzo Mzuri is implementing 4 key activities:
Pilot a new and Innovative child-centred approach to pre-school education
Taking an action learning approach the project is building the capacity of 80 in-service teachers across 20 schools to cultivate a child-centered, holistic approach to teaching. There are 5, one week courses focusing on play, outdoor learning, language and literacy, motor skills, health, nutrition, special needs and classroom management. This approach to early years teaching creates a space for children to be curious, creative and innovative, it builds children’s self-esteem, and enhances their development and cognitive learning potential.
Invest in Infrastructure for improved learning outcomes
In collaboration with local government, schools and communities, the project is investing in the construction of toilets, boreholes, classrooms and kitchen gardens in 10 public schools to ensure facilities are available and suitable for younger students in pre-primary classes.
Empowering communities with Knowledge and structures to engage in and drive solutions for issues of ECD
Mwanzo Mzuri is delivering an evidence based media campaign on issues of ECD, particularly education and child protection. The campaign is delivered through national and local media including television and radio and will be stregthened at the local level through dialogues and theatre for development. The campaign is raising awerness of all stakeholders including parents, teachers and government on the challenges around ECD and their roles in addressing those challenges.
Working accross 34 schools the project is building the capacity of schools comrnitees on ECD and establishing and strengthening child protection working groups and monitors to ensure young students are protected from violence and abuse that impacts their learning.
Monitoring policy implementation and advocating at local and national level for policies and guidelines that will deliver quality and safe pre-primary education
Mwanzo Mzuri is monitoring policy implementation and school performance on ECD at the local level through 34 Friends of Education (FoE’s). A FoE is a volunteer with a passion and commitment to improving education. We are building the capacity of FoE’s not only to lead the monitoring of school performance at the local level, but also to deliver local advocacy to hold leaders to account.
At the national level HakiElimu is engaging MPs through dialogue meetings to share policy gaps, lessons and recommendations for policy changes and implementation, impacting the provision of quality and safe pre-primary education.
Mwanzo Mzuri will be delivered over 3 years from May 2018 to April 2021 and will deliver 3 key results:
- Improved school readiness and learning outcomes for 3,000 children aged 3-6.
- Citizens (including parents), government and Institutions are knowledgeable and engaged together in driving solutions and accountability at the ward and district level on issues of ECD, specifically around Education and Child
- Policies, regulations and guidelines that aim to deliver quality and safe pre-primary education in Tanzania will be established/completed.
Areas of Implementation
- The project is implemented in a total of 34 schools across 10 districts.
- There are 20 focus schools, which receive all interventions including teacher training; 10 private schools in Kinondoni; and 10 government schools, (4 in Kilosa, 4 in Iramba and 2 in Mpwapwa).
- The project also implements in 14 comparison government schools, which receive all interventions apart from teacher training; 4 in Arusha, 2 in Moshi, 2 in Babati, 2 in Korogwe, 2 in Masasi, and 2 in Tunduru.