Teach For India

Posted: September 4th, 2015 | Author: | | No Comments »

From Wendy Kopp:

In Delhi, Teach For India fellow Pooja Chopra taught 30 fourth-grade girls in a poor settlement. As she visited with her students and their families, she learned that, far too often, girls in the community were not expected to reach the highest levels of education.

Pooja oriented her teaching toward helping her students realize their dreams through education. She set out to foster their personal leadership and to ensure they would always be able to learn, regardless of circumstances. Pooja broke the class up into groups, allowing each group to choose its leader and set its rules. Within each group, every girl was assigned a buddy, whose learning she was also responsible for. Pooja guided the students through their lessons, made sure that no group or pair fell behind, and gave them the agency to debate questions and determine their answers independently.

As Pooja developed relationships with the girls’ parents, she discovered that many of the mothers had no financial means to support their daughters’ educations. To enable them to partner in their daughters’ schooling, she helped them launch a small tailoring business. Inside and outside of her classroom, Pooja’s leadership is setting her students on new life paths. By the end of the school year, her students showed an incredible 1.7 years of growth and were exhibiting new confidence, initiative, and independence.

You can read the whole thing here.

Teach For India, just like Teach For America, has at least 2 big effects:

a. The direct effect on kids when a teacher like Pooja helps 30 kids.

b. The larger effect when lots of Teach For India alumni create an education reform movement that is focused on school quality — the outcomes (what kids learn), rather than the inputs (what is spent, or what philosophy is used).

With Bridge now recruiting for a team to launch our first schools in India, it’s easy to see what a powerful force the Teach For India alumni are — they’re results-driven, humble.

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