Mandate: Monitor the quality of education provided to the schools in the country, design, develop, and deliver programmes to improve and maintain standards of education in these schools.
ESQID aims to promote improvements in standards, quality and attainment in Maldivian education through first-hand, independent evaluation. ESQID provides professional policy advice and is engaged in a wide range of tasks which support educational improvement. In this regard, ESQID’s main functions are distributed amongst four sections: Supervision, Assessment, School Health and Safety, and Quality Initiatives Design.
Proposed Structure for ESQID
1. Supervision Section
- The mandate of the Supervision Section is to evaluate all the schools based on pre-determined criteria, considered internationally as best-practices. In this regard, the supervision section has under its mandate 232 schools in the country.
- A large part of monitoring is referrals and follow-ups. The Section will liaise with other departments, sections and educational units in the Provinces to assure that proposed Supervision recommendations are followed up with implementation.
- The supervision of schools is to be structured in two modalities; internal self-evaluation of schools and external evaluation of schools by Provinces and ESQID.
1.1 Self-evaluation of schools unit
Conducting evaluations and making school-improvement plans based on these evaluations requires technical expertise as well as task-specific tools. Therefore, the main responsibility of this unit is to develop tools that schools will use in their self-evaluations, and train schools in the process and monitoring skills of self-evaluation as well as creating school development plans. The unit will also be responsible to monitor the implementation phase of the school development plans, providing professional support and guidance. The unit will be divided into 7 cells, corresponding to the 7 provinces.
An additional function of the unit will be to develop and monitor internal supervision mechanisms of schools. The unit will develop regulations and tools to ease the implementation of best-practices in schools, pertaining to internal supervision within the school. The larger task of this unit will therefore be to monitor the school internal supervision mechanisms and give recommendations to improve the mechanisms established in schools.
1.2 External supervision unit
The External supervision unit is responsible for ensuring that the schools in the Maldives are externally supervised and evaluated, for the registration of external supervisors, and for advising the Minister of Education on all aspects of the quality of education and school standards. In this regard, the external supervision unit will:
· Establish and maintain an up-to-date supervision mechanism where whole-school supervision, which shall include both school self-evaluation and external team supervision, will be conducted at intervals that are deemed appropriate
· Establish and maintain a register of external supervisors;
· Regularly review the external supervision system through organised and systematic research into the aspects of teaching and learning;
· Regularly review the standard of external supervisions and the reports made by the supervisors;
· Promote efficiency, validity, and accountability in the conducting and reporting processes of external supervision trips;
The purposes of supervising schools are to:
- ensure quality of teaching and learning
- promote a supportive culture within the schools where learning is maximized, and each and every child is safe and protected
- promote a system whereby personal, social and health education is given equal importance
- promote spiritual, moral and cultural development of students in the schools
Supervisors and supervision teams
School supervisions are to be conducted by teams of supervisors who are permanent staff of ESQID. Other personnel will be assessed, recruited, trained, and enrolled for the supervision of a particular school. One ESQID member from each subject discipline is required for the team formation, as findings from the trip will be the basis of professional guidance and support to the schools on a continuing basis.
1. Assessment Section
The ESQID Assessment Section is responsible for developing and administering tests that measure the performance of students and schools against the national standards, as outlined in the curriculum. The (AIM OF THE ) national assessment scores are used to measure adequate yearly progress for all the schools at the primary level so that relevant intervention programmes can be developed to ensure a good equality education for all children in the country. It also functions as a system of accountability for teachers, school-heads, teacher educators and curriculum developers in the teaching and learning processes.
Another function of the Assessment Section will be to establish, maintain, advise and monitor assessment methods and practices in schools throughout the country. The school-based Assessment unit focuses on establishing current assessment techniques in the classroom. This is accomplished through policy initiatives, short courses, seminars and workshops as well as observations, test papers and assessment practices in schools. The unit will also be responsible for implementing new assessment related initiatives in schools, particularly related to Assessment for Learning.
1.1 National Assessment Unit
The functions of this unit are as follows:
- To design national diagnostic test papers aligned with the ‘Key Outcomes’ of the national curriculum as set by the Ministry of Education
- To conduct national assessments of grade 4 and 7
- Mark, collate and enter all the assessment test results of that particular year
- Analyse the data collected from the national assessments
- Share it with all the schools and other relevant stakeholders
- Conduct stakeholder meetings to review and develop intervention programmes to improve the quality of learning of students
- Inform stakeholders of processes, procedures, guidelines, methods, etc needed to fairly and effectively administer the tests –
1.2 School-based Assessment Unit
The policy of the Ministry of Education is to change the practices of traditional pen and paper tests conducted in schools to more current methods incorporating Assessment for Learning methods. Moreover, assessment practices in class always need to be current and helpful in improving learner outcomes. Therefore, the functions of this unit are:
- To develop, maintain, and up-date an effective feedback mechanism where students and parents know the standard of the student, and what needs to be done to improve the standard.
- To train teachers to conduct effective assessment for learning procedures
- Monitor the implementation of assessment for learning practices in schools
- To advice policy decisions relating to assessment practices in schools
- Develop advocacy materials for change of assessment practices in schools
- Develop training materials for assessment of learning practices in schools
1. School Health and Safety Section
Recognising the interdependence of good health and educational accomplishments, the Ministry of Education has identified a number of health related policies to develop the quality of learners in schools:
- Ensure Every school shall be a safe and healthy place for children and staff to learn and work,
- improve the health status of children, in turn, to improve the quality of learning
- provide adequate health personnel to schools
- Implement child-rights and anti-bullying policies in schools
- Provide clean water, adequate sanitation and….. (One cannot “provide”) hygiene practices in every school (suggest enforce, teach, implement….)
- Promote physical well being, lifetime fitness, and preparedness for leading a healthy life in a changing environment
- Promote and Ensure swimming and water safety
- Improve nutritional knowledge and skills instruction in schools
- Introduce life-skills education into the learning process
- Provide support and guidance on good mental health practices in teachers and learners
- Improve the delivery of adolescent reproductive health information to all schools and communities
The implementation of these polices need professional input, monitoring, and assessment.
1.1 Health promotion and Nutrition Unit
Maldives Health Promoting Schools Initiative (MHPSI) is a holistic, whole school approach to personal, family and community health which provides an essential framework to create quality, productive citizens who can contribute to the overall development of the nation. The cells in this unit include:
· Implementation, guidance, and monitoring of Maldives Health Promoting Initiative
· Skills for Health
§ Environmental health
§ Hygiene education
§ Skills- based health education
· Student medical screening
· Physical education (with emphasis on development of personal fitness)
· Tobacco prevention
· Nutrition education and diet
· Monitoring school Health Assistants
1.2 School Safety Unit
· Disaster preparedness
· Water and sanitation
· Schools health emergencies
· Students rights
· School – first aid
· Swimming and water safety
1.3 Adolescent Health and Mental Health Unit
· Drug prevention
· Reproductive health and life skills education
· Psychosocial support
· Mental health
· Bullying and violence prevention
1. Quality Initiative Section
Since the main focus of the section is improving the quality of education in the country, there are many initiatives that need to be developed as part of quality interventions. Further, as part of the work done in other sections of the division, a lot of data are generated pertaining to the quality of the schools in the country. Therefore, as part of the work done in ESQID, a Quality Initiative Section needs to be established.
The functions of this unit are:
- To design and formulate programmes based on relevant data gathered from Supervision Section and Assessment Section
- Develop materials to support the programmes
- Conduct training for implementation of these programmes
- Conduct monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of these programmes
The functions of this unit are:
- To edit, do the layout and publish all the support materials developed
- To publish findings and results in such a way that all the stakeholders can understand them
- Make yearly advocacy materials based on quality improvement based on the work that is carried out in the division.
· Monitoring school counselors