Saturday 30 June 2018

Core Skills training is provided by the British Council throughout Ethiopia to support teachers develop their pedagogy in the 6 identified core-skill areas. Through Core Skills, we aim to give young people the skills and knowledge they need to prosper in a globalised society.

As part of this endeavour in Ethiopia, from 26 to 27 May, a refresher Core training was provided in Axum to teachers and school leaders. All participants had taken the first training a few months back. The training in May was the refresher which aimed at, among others, gauging their progress in embedding the core skills in their day-to-day teaching activities and giving them a platform to share their experiences with their peers.  

During this event, just like in most other Core Skill refresher trainings, impressive tales of how some teachers achieved the above became a great motivation for all present.

Abrham T/ Haimanot, a Core Skills facilitator, trained a lady teacher from Harar. He said, ‘When she got back to her school, she tried to understand why her students were low-performing. She found out that some of her students underperform because of poverty-related issues and others due to health issues. But, some were just plain troublemakers. To solve these problems, she started liaising with different institutions. She contacted parents, teachers, NGOs and other government bodies to support the poor. She liaised with health institutions to help the sick and the police to shape up the troublemakers. The result was incredible. This lady claimed that, finally, after 28 years, she was really teaching.’

Its agreed by all stakeholders that the success of the project comes from the commitment of all involved. Inku Fasil, the Programme and Partnerships Manager at the British Council who leads the Core Skills training, pointed out that while the British Council covers just 30 percent of the cost associated with these trainings, the regional education bureaus handle the rest.

This commitment was strikingly visible during the two days Axum training.

Wubet Girma, Deputy Director of the British Council, after she came back from Axum commented, ‘It was a heartening experience to engage with everyone we had encountered. The teacher who welcomed us to his classroom (and home) as part of the individual storytelling, the high school Director who went out of his way to accommodate our request despite his busy schedule (with the national exams coming up), the 350+ teachers and school leaders who have travelled from across the Region to take part in the training (including a nursing mom), the Tigray Region Education Bureau staffs who have been with us throughout handling all the logistics (even assigning a 4WD exclusively for the team) to the amazingly energetic CC facilitators’. 

Connecting Classrooms, the umbrella programme of the British Council which includes the Core Skills project, is now entering its fourth phase and aims to strengthen its activities by giving special emphasis to delivering quality.

To learn more about our Connecting Classrooms programme, log into our website at