Thursday, June 18, 2009

Visit to the Ministry of Education – Liberia




Before developing a peace education curriculum for Liberia grade schools, I thought it wise to visit the Ministry of Education to inform them about my mission in Liberia. I met the Attorney for the Ministry of Education who informed me that they had a joint Memorandum of Understand with UNESCO / UNHCR to develop and teach Peace, Human Rights, and Citizenship Education in Liberia.
I congratulated the Attorney and asked, if a curriculum was developed? If so, then there was no need for me to reinvent the wheel. He told me, however, to just go ahead with my work.

I then informed the Attorney that the first thing to do before developing a curriculum was to conduct a baseline survey in schools in order to know and identify the causes of violent behavior and measure the extent to which it has affected students’ daily lives. This baseline survey will not only include interview questionnaires for students and teachers, but more importantly, will also have focus group discussions with the students and staff.

Second, the survey results will be entered into a statistical program to record and analyze all the findings from the field. After the data is analyzed, a curriculum could be developed to address those root causes of violence and its impact within the schools.

The next step is to establish a pilot project to test the curriculum in a few schools. After that, formative evaluations should be conducted throughout the school year to determine if the curriculum is meeting it goals. In short, I informed the Attorney, that the above steps were some of the methods needed in order to develop a successful Peace Education Curriculum for Liberia. The Attorney then informed me that I was doing the right thing and encouraged me to continue with my work. The Attorney promised to introduce me to the Minister of Education once I am done with the curriculum.

Over the next few weeks, I will keep you posted of the on the various steps which I will be undertaking in order to develop a Peace Education Curriculum for Liberia.

7 comments:

  1. Mr. Vonhm,

    Thank you for blogging your experiences as you return to Liberia. I am a graduate student at American University in Washington, D.C. My degree is in Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs, and I was involved briefly with the TRC.

    Please keep blogging. I'm sure you have quite a following already, that more will soon discover you, and that you'll have much to teach us as you continue.

    Best to you,

    Kevin

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  2. Hi I am a researcher from Stockholm university. I have been living in Liberia during the time of my phD thesis work. I have a dream to open up a small scale university in Liberia. Give students to complete their bachelor, Master degrees. I have courses, materials and on some ares including peace education. Can you email me on nilani@telia.com so we can exchange ideas more.

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  4. Shalom Mr. Vohmn,
    My name is Nathan Aharon and I was actually briefly involved in peace education In Liberia. We thought the war had ended during a lull In the fighting in 1990-91. HavIng been involved in education before the onset of hostilities in December of 1989, I and other educators in Liberia began to have a series of seminars to examine the feasibility and process of returning child soldiers back to the classroom. Needless to say, the cessation of hostilities did not last, the children returned back to the bush and the fronts and we became internal refugees, eventually making our way to Cote D'Ivoire. Anyway, after waiting for the embers of war to cool and finishing projects in many other African countries, including Ghana and Benin, we, the African Hebrew Development Agency, are finally beginning to study the feasibility of doing long-term development work in Liberia again. Possibly we can network to achieve our mutual goal of a sustainable peace and security through education in Liberia.

    Your humble servant,
    Nathan Aharon
    nathanbainaharon@yahoo.com; www.africanhebrewisraelites.com

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  5. Brother Mainlehwon, I am working at an orphanage and school in Careysburg, Montserrado Co, Liberia. We are looking into the current school and its curriculum to try and identify ways to improve. I am very interested to hear the status of your efforts.

    Thanks,
    Amy

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    Replies
    1. Thank you very much for getting in touched Sister Amy. You may visit Center for Peace Education (CPE) office located in Moulton Corner – Brewerville for further discussions on how we could partner and/or collaborate on future projects.

      For immediate assistance on a way forward, please contact the following persons:
      John T. Cooper – Director for Training and Research – CPE (0886 – 58 – 8337)
      Mohammed A. Kiazolu – Field Supervisor – CPE (077 – 322 – 333)
      Thanks,
      CEP Staff

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