The Mutiara Insani School in Purwakarta – a town some 85 kilometres east of Indonesia’s capital Jakarta – was originally founded in 2010 to provide free education for underprivileged children. The school grew fast, and in 2014 was formalized as a private institution by the IKDE Foundation: a family-run organization that invests in Indonesian education and healthcare initiatives. Today, the Mutiara Insani school has almost 200 pre- and primary-school students taught by some 25 teachers.
As part of its continued investment in both the school and in West Java’s overall educational infrastructure, the IKDE Foundation has commissioned Finland University to deliver a teacher-training course focused on early-childhood and primary-school education. The overall objective of this pilot project is to help teachers develop their own locally-specific training model that can then be extended to even more schools throughout the Purwakarta region. For this the IKDE Foundation is working together with the local government’s Department of Education.
Meeting local needs
“We’re aiming to increase the competence of teachers with best practises from Finland, adjusted to meet local circumstances and needs,” says the schools’ finance and public relations manager Wiwik Sabardini. “The long-term goal here is to create a scalable and self-sustaining teacher-training system that can be applied at the regional level.”
The course will be divided into three themes – early-childhood education, primary education, and secondary education – with modules for mathematics, reading, writing, languages, arts, ethics, environmental studies and more. Pedagogical skills covered include learning by playing, assessment and observation, teacher-guardian co-operation, team teaching, and problem solving.
“It’s well-known throughout the world that Finland provides quality education,” says Sabardini. “Finland University is a very good representative for the country. It’s well-organized, and run by people who are knowledgeable, kind and very receptive to feedback. By working with them we aim to help our teachers develop into truly creative professionals with the ability to teach to a very high standard.”
Finland University has been working in Indonesia since 2012, when the University of Tampere was commissioned to deliver a Master’s degree programme for a group of teachers from three Sukma Foundation schools in Northern Sumatra. The schools had been built after the devastating 2004 tsunami destroyed much of the local infrastructure. Sukma, in cooperation with local authorities, wanted to invest in the teachers with a professional development course to help them with their efforts in rebuilding the region.
“Our clients in Indonesia have a very clear vision on what they want to achieve,” says Finland University key account manager Mari Argillander. “They take a long-term view on education for the country and are committed to achieving some ambitious targets over the next 10 to 20 years. We’re honoured to be part of this by bringing Finland’s expertise in education into Indonesian schools.”
Photos: Mari Argillander
Mari Argillander, Key Account Manager Finland University, firstname.lastname@example.org
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