Transformation of Schools in Latin America

Improvements in educational quality are more effective when all of those involved take part.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I remember, involve me and I learn” (Benjamin Franklin)

The ‘Transformation of Schools in Latin America’ project promotes a comprehensive change at educational centres, promoting management processes, training teachers in educational processes, and involving students, their families and the community in the improvement process. Six schools which have implemented the project will be sharing their experiences and showing us their journey toward change.

Fundación Telefónica and Fe y Alegría implemented this project in 60 public schools in Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Panama and Peru, after becoming aware of the low quality of education being provided in the more vulnerable environments in these countries. All of them applied the Fe y Alegria methodology: ‘Fe y Alegría Quality Improvement System’, widely known in Latin America for its successful implementation.

Since the project began in 2011, more than 30,000 people from the educational community have participated in it.

The lack of innovative strategies in the classroom, the lack of recreational space for students, the lack of organisation and the educational community’s lack of commitment were some of the problem areas detected in different educational centres. We chose six schools, one for each country, to demonstrate their journey towards the improvement educational quality in their classrooms.

Since the project began in 2011, more than 30,000 people have taken part in it, including directors, teachers, students, families and community leaders. The aim of the methodology used is for the educational institutions to organise themselves around sustained improvement processes, where the focus for reflection and action will be education.

3_Guatemala_escuela_okMethodology phases

Evaluation. All the players from the educational community made a self-assessment of their school: context, resources, teaching processes and academic results.
– Reflection. The results obtained were discussed in order to prioritise those problem areas that the centre needed to work on to improve educational quality.
– Planning and implementation. They set out improvement plans with the goals and results that they aim to achieve within three years.
– Systematisation. The group of people selected for the systematisation process will be responsible for documenting each school’s experiences since the project began. With the data gathered over the three years the project has been running, we will be publishing a report in March 2016 containing 20 transformation stories regarding schools in Latin America.

The aim: to share the transformation stories of the participating schools and for the lessons learned to help improve educational quality in schools in vulnerable environments.