Two Networks Come Together in Madagascar

As part of TCRWP’s new initiative to support teacher professional development in under-resourced schools and communities around the world, our colleague, Kate Montgomery, recently traveled to Madagascar to work in partnership with a network of teacher graduates from the School of Education at the University of Antananarivo. This network of teachers and professors is led by primatologist, writer, and teacher educator Dr. “Hanta” Rasamimanana Ratovoni. Working together, we hope to create professional communities, share resources and support professional development events—and perhaps someday a lab school—for the many, many teachers across Madagascar who work with very few books or teaching materials and have little, if any, training to rely on.

The challenges teachers face are significant. The island of Madagascar is approximately the size and population of Texas, the literacy rate is roughly 65%, and according to The World Bank, the percentage of people who live in extreme poverty is 75%. Roughly four out of ten children drop out before finishing primary school. About 80% of teachers—80,000—have no formal teacher training.

While in Madagascar, Kate had the opportunity to talk with many teachers and students in schools in and around Antananarivo. Despite extreme challenges, teachers there—as in so many places—showed great care and dedication to the children in their charge. One teacher captured the hopes of many, “I would like to be a better teacher,” she said, “when can we talk?”

For more about this project, email Kate at