In INOVASI’s newest partner province, East Java, five districts and cities are ready to support innovation in basic education, in partnership with INOVASI. These include Pasuruan, Probolinggo, Sidoarjo, Sumenep and Batu City. INOVASI is an Australian-Indonesian education partnership program that seeks to improve the quality of basic education, especially in the fields of literacy, numeracy, and social inclusion.
During early program socialisation activities, East Java stakeholders expressed their support for growing the program in key districts. This included Ali Afandi, Head of the Subdivision of Domestic Cooperation, Public Relations and Protocol Bureau, Regional Secretariat of the East Java Provincial Government.
“I hope the socialisation can be carried out immediately by five districts/cities and approved by the respective regional leaders so that it can be signed together with the East Java Governor in the near future,” he said during a recent cooperation meeting to discuss the upcoming Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing.
Ali explained that INOVASI is expected to support the skills improvement of teachers, principals, supervisors and education stakeholders in partner schools, as part of improving the quality of basic education teaching and learning.
East Java Governor Soekarwo also expressed his support for the implementation of the INOVASI program in East Java.
“The East Java Provincial Government recommended a number of districts/cities as the initial partners of INOVASI. INOVASI program will be our partner until 2019. The selected districts/cities are those whose policies are in favor of the quality of student learning and care for children with special needs,” he explained.
Basilius Bengoteku, INOVASI’s Senior Sub-National Implementation Advisor, advised that the INOVASI program will assist teachers, principals, and supervisors at the cluster (or ‘gugus’) level by strengthening the Teacher Working Groups (KKGs).
“Each district/city will have a focus on strengthening education based on the problems in each district/city,” he said.
INOVASI will focus on key basic education issues in each district, based on local needs and context. In Sidoarjo focus will turn to strengthening early grade numeracy, while in Pasuruan it will be early grade literacy. In Probolinggo, in addition to strengthening literacy, there will also be a pilot aimed at exploring multigrade teaching as a way to overcome teacher shortages in remote areas. Batu City will focus on strengthening leadership of school principals, while Sumenep will also look at early grade literacy.
“Especially for Sumenep, we will also work on the islands of Talango Island, to strengthen basic education on the islands,” said Basilius.
In addition to strengthening efforts in primary schools, INOVASI program will also target Madrasah Ibtidaiyah (Islamic schools) under the Ministry of Religious Affairs.