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Reigniting intrinsic motivation in teachers and education systems.

STiR Education

location_on India
We support education systems to reignite intrinsic motivation in every teacher and official, to role-model the foundations of lifelong learning for every child. We're working towards a world where every child develops a love of lifelong learning. Since 2012, we've reached more than 200,000 teachers and 6 million children across 3 Indian states and one quarter of all districts in Uganda.
By 2030, 300 million children across the emerging world will have developed the foundations of lifelong learning.
Overview

HundrED has selected this innovation to

HundrED 2021

HundrED 2020

Key figures

Innovation Overview

TEACHERS
Target Group
6 200 000
Children/Users
3
Countries
2012
Established
Not-for-profit
Organisation
1 125
Views
Updated on March 22nd, 2021
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about the innovation

Education systems today must prepare every child, everywhere, to thrive in a world of ‘unknown unknowns’.

Children and young people today face a world of ‘unknown unknowns’. They will need to learn and adapt as they move between sectors, jobs and settlements. To succeed, they will need to develop a love of learning. And education systems need to support them by developing fertile ‘soil’ – the foundations of lifelong learning. This has been recognised in the development plans of many emerging countries.

But education systems are failing to address this need. Governments are spending hundreds of dollars a year on educating children – but not preparing them for a future citizenship and workforce. The ‘seeds’ of their technical interventions are unable to grow and flourish. This matches the experience of leading employers. For example, the Confederation of Indian Industry found that more than 50% of school leavers were unemployable.

What we do?

Role-modelling and relationships.

We understand role-modelling to be the demonstration and promotion of behaviours and attitudes that you wish to see in others. This is overlooked in most education systems. But it’s been our biggest organisational strength and source of success.

Teachers are critical agents of change. They offer the main in-school opportunity for role-modelling in a child’s life. So if we are to make an impact at child level, we have to support teachers to become intrinsically motivated lifelong learners first.

And it’s not enough to develop lifelong learning at teacher level alone. There’s extensive evidence to show that line managers are the most powerful agent of change in the workplace. So for this change to be sustainable, we also need to develop a love of learning at all levels of the system. This includes school leaders, and the state and district officials who support them.

Government learning partnerships. 

We know that there are many actors involved in any education system. But our learning has been that engaging governments is absolutely critical if any intervention is to succeed. They provide the best opportunity to ensure that our work can be sustained over the long term.

We don’t want our approach to be dependent on us. So we’re learning to work in partnership with governments to deliver the model. We run the approach together, and aim to step back our involvement over time to ensure long-term sustainability. They refocus existing resources to the model over five years. And they increase their contribution to the costs to ensure ownership and long-term sustainability.

How it works. 

Our approach is based around peer networks, action and feedback, and reflection. These activities underpin everything that we do for teachers, school leaders and officials. And they form the heart of our termly learning improvement cycles. Each cycle focuses on a different theme (e.g. the science of learning). First, district officials are introduced to the content for the next term in a three-day training meeting. Then they lead training sessions for school leaders to build their confidence and capability to lead teacher network meetings. Teachers will learn new practices, to enable higher quality interactions with their children.

At each level, we introduce monthly coaching and support to enable high-quality feedback and increase autonomy, mastery and purpose. And regular alignment meetings at district and state levels provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to analyse data, share learning and develop plans together to strengthen delivery.

Teacher network meetings. 

Every month, teachers meet in peer networks – meetings of 20 to 30 teachers within a school or across a group of local schools. The meetings are led by school leaders, who expose teachers to key classroom practices and the evidence behind them. The networks strengthen peer connections, fostering mutual support and sustainable improvement.

Between meetings, teachers act on their learning by introducing new practices in their classrooms. They are observed by a school leader or peer, and provided feedback for further improvement. The next month, teachers reconvene to reflect on their experiences and adapt and refine their action plan accordingly. After each third network meeting, teachers move on to a new area of practice. And the cycle continues.

Supporting school leaders and officials.

In this model, every level of the system needs to develop strong role-models and trusting relationships. And school leaders and district officials play essential roles in delivering the approach.

District officials participate in termly training institutes with their peers to understand new practices for each term. They then lead training institutes for school leaders, to empower them to lead teacher network meetings effectively. Over the course of the term, both groups play an active role in supporting teachers. They develop a culture of developmental observations and feedback, creating emotional safety and using data to provide rich insights. And their intrinsic motivation grows.

At present, STiR mostly supports district officials directly. Our District Leaders (one person per district) provides training and coaching for 10-20 officials to ensure that they are confident in delivering the model. But we’re keen to further leverage our impact and ensure even greater government ownership. So we’re exploring how to support officials at state or national level to take up our role to increase our sustainability.

Government ownership and adoption are essential for long-term sustainability. Our team works to ensure that the approach is increasingly prioritised within our partner systems. And we collaborate to customise and design content for each geography. Working in this way makes our model incredibly cost-effective. Our only expense is our team. We currently spend $0.50 per child annually in India. But we expect to see this fall to less than $0.20 over the next two years, as we start to explore central learning partnerships with governments.

Research

HundrED Academy Review

Love that this innovation addresses the issue with teachers not being in love with their career choice and that they wish for teachers to fall back in love with teaching! This innovation starts with the teachers passion that will ultimately impact the learners.

- HundrED Academy Member

The partnership with the government to rethink the way they use resources to complement and support the programme is exactly what strikes me as something that will have the right impact and will be scalable.

- HundrED Academy Member
IMPACT & SCALABILITY
In education, we hear a lot surrounding the needs of students, but what about teachers? STiR Education is addressing the need to support teachers and revive their passion for their work which significantly increases their abilities in the classroom and how they interact with their students. By involving governments, school leaders and teachers, STiR takes a holistic approach towards change.
Academy review results
Scalability
Impact
High Impact
Low Scalability
High Impact
High Scalability
Low Impact
Low Scalability
Low Impact
High Scalability
Read more about our selection process
Media

See this innovation in action

Rethinking the critical role of data to improve teaching and learning
https://www.brookings.edu/blog/education-plus-development/2020/01/30/rethinking-the-critical-role-of-data-to-improve-teaching-and-learning/
Increasing system synchronisation in South West B, Delhi - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/increasing-system-synchronisation-in-south-west-b-delhi/
Social and Emotional Learning and the New Normal - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/social-and-emotional-learning-and-the-new-normal/
Longitudinal study - Uganda Year 1 evaluation report - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/longitudinal-study-uganda-year-1-evaluation-report/
STiR's response to Covid-19 in Uganda - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/stirs-response-to-covid-19-in-uganda/
Reimagining Education Systems for Changing Times: 3 Questions Governments Need to Ask - AVPN
https://avpn.asia/blog/reimagining-education-systems-changing-times-3-questions-governments-need-to-ask/
Case Study - Luweero, Uganda - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/case-study-luweero-uganda/
Case Study - Arua, Uganda - STIR Education
https://stireducation.org/case-study-arua-uganda-2/
The true promise of the garden of education
http://educationcommission.org/updates/promises-promises-and-the-true-promise-of-the-garden-of-education/?utm_source=stir&utm_medium=social
Finding the Sweet Spot for Innovation Within Government Systems (SSIR)
https://ssir.org/articles/entry/finding_the_sweet_spot_for_innovation_within_government_systems
Sharath Jeevan - Education Commission & GESF 2019 - My Highlights
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSSPaxks3QU

Milestones

Achievements & Awards

July 2019
Innovation page created on HundrED.org
May 2019
STiR helped to achieve the 94% pass rate for the 2019 board exams in Delhi (best ever!)
April 2019
STiR CEO Sharath Jeevan has been recognised as one of the ‘Ten of the Best’ in the UK
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