When improving learning becomes a priority, great progress is possible.

(Mehr Parwar, Rawalpindi)

Key players in education rarely determine learning outcomes of the classroom teaching. Education research and studies represent low interest and lack of focus towards students learning outcomes as their priority. Various factors and consequences can be seen regarding the issue; First and essential priority is the personal interest which divert individuals attention and focus from classroom effectiveness and students learning as many education actors have different interests beyond learning. Observations of public schools explore that, the representatives of education department try to preserve their positions and powers. Administrators may focus more on keeping politicians and teachers happy than on promoting students learning may simply try to protect their own positions. Similarly private suppliers of education such as building contractors, textbooks providers and others struggle to get more profit on delivery thus putting students’ interests and needs far away from what actually facilitates in learning. These individual interests and choices of a particular policy hardly determined by whether it improves learning or not. The findings of World Development Report 2018 explore that many countries are suffering from same issues such as; stakeholders lack of attention in classroom learning outcomes, unavailing opportunity and various barriers at administrative and ground level.
 
Poor management and governance of school leaders often undermine schooling quality. It is an absolute fact that effective school leadership tend to raise students learning indirectly by improving teaching quality and ensuring effective use of resources. Unluckily most of the schools systems in Pakistan, the role of the head teacher tilted towards more on administrative chores despite of pedagogy. As Memon, 1998 states that the head teachers in Pakistan tend to play more administrative roles rather than pedagogic leaders. They spend an ample amount of time in maintaining discipline and keeping orders rather than providing technical support to teachers in classroom. Mostly principals in public schools have been observed controlling roles and paying morning rounds of the classrooms just to make sure whether teachers are present in their classes and whether students are sitting quietly without any noise and disturbance. Their personal interest and preference is more likely to sit in their offices, chatting and calculating salary packages, increments and bonus as they annually to receive from their department. Consequently, they are not actively involved in helping teachers solve problems, do not provide instructional advice, and do not set goals that prioritize learning.

Teaching and learning practices demand classroom level regular interactions among teachers and students to bring more productive and effective learning. Regrettably in our education system teachers spend instruction time either outside of the classroom or keeping themselves busy in filling registers just wasting actual instruction time in working non-teaching activities. They have their own priorities and concerns beyond classroom learning outcomes may enjoying themselves in chatting on favorite food, dresses and waste actual teaching time in unnecessary discussions. Teachers either leave the students doing nothing or simply making them busy in coping lessons from textbooks to notebooks for memorizing subjects. Students at younger grades have less power where they can raise a question or showing any sentiment. Parents have no voice on how little their children learning in classroom until they start looking for work.

Many factors within and outside schools and classrooms help to shape teachers‘ sense of professional learning community. School and classroom conditions, teachers’ professional communities, and student/family background conditions are directly responsible for the learning of students.

Education department and political stakeholders must ensure delivery of service in actual place without any interference and political influence. Here the interest and attention of education department is crucial to monitor the service and provision of resources to real beneficiaries. School principals and head teachers must prioritize their interest and attention to shape school conditions and classroom practices. They must provide support to bring innovations and modifications in classroom instructions, improve physical conditions of classrooms with the provision of resources and provide guidance to the teachers in pedagogy.
 
Teachers must prove themselves to be interested in brining learning outcomes in their classroom. They must act as active and energetic facilitators in class by keeping students busy in activities that foster knowledge, skills and attitudes in young minds. Strategies such as engaging students in productive discussions in small groups, sharing ideas, reading and telling stories, doing mental math problems, hand-on experiments, brainstorming topics, writing, drawing and playing games etc. Along with these strategies teachers must implement various assessment approaches by providing individual support and guidance with corrections, feedback and encouragements as necessary step to strengthen the foundations of classroom learning outcomes.

To bring this idea into action all stakeholders should focus their attention and interest to gain actionable information in order to execute context-appropriate responses at system level and school.

 

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05 Nov, 2017 Views: 379

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