The Initial Teacher Training Education (ITTE) is a specialized programme of The City School, addressing the pedagogical needs and skills required by new teachers, for effective transition into the teaching profession. It is aimed at developing new teachers professionally by giving them a blended learning experience of theory and practice, and thus raises standards by improving the educational performance of The City School’s students.
This project was initiated in June 2019 in collaboration with the University of Cambridge’s Faculty of Education UK, to train 60 teacher educators across the network. The instructors in turn are now playing an instrumental role in training all other teachers who are new to The City School system or to the teaching profession.
The teachers’ educators first received face to face training from Cambridge tutors in two tiers, in June 2019 and in September 2019, in Lahore and Karachi respectively. All these instructors will now train at least one cohort of The City School new hiring of teachers each year, for the next five years. The ITTE training is mandatory for all teachers who joined The City School network in 2018 and beyond. The course consists of three workshops spanning over 120 hours and one such complete course has already taken place in 2019.
The new joiner teachers have been divided into clusters within the three regions of the network, to be trained by the teacher educators. This cluster-based training opportunity is meeting the immediate needs of untrained, newly joined teachers on a large-scale. There are 14 Clusters in South Region with 211 newly joined teachers being trained. In the Central Region, there are 15 clusters and 152 participants, and in the North Region, there are 9 clusters with 97 participants.
The City School has received very good feedback from the teacher educators and the newly trained teachers about the ITTE Training. The teacher educators said, “The Cambridge trainers had a high level of expertise and we found the activities quite challenging. The resources used were up to date and engaging. The training facility and services were highly appreciated. Most of the learning happened collaboratively and equal opportunity was given for individual learning.”
In order to ensure that the quality of training imparted is maintained, a Centre for Educational Professional Development (CEPD) team, specifically established to monitor and provide trainings, has been visiting every cluster to support them.
During these visits, the instructors are observed and provided constructive feedback, so they can support the professional development journey of new joiners in the system. The first cohort of 460 newly trained teachers concluded in March 2020, following which the instructors will continue the journey of training other junior teachers.
The same teacher educators will also take part in the ITTE Cohort Two, which is set to take place later in 2020. The cluster-based training plan will be conducted either on weekdays after school hours, or on the weekends. A full cohort of 120 hours will also take place in the summer.
An exciting edge to this programme is the blended learning format that has been implemented, that allows learning to continue beyond the classroom. The course content is closely linked to real life classroom situations and pertinent topics such as lesson planning and assessments, are at the heart of the Initial Teacher Training Education Project (ITTE). All this training translates into providing superior learning to the students, as a testament to The City School’s pledge to provide quality instruction, continuing its legacy of the past 40 years of excellence in education.