Capacity building for education

In emergency settings, schools may be damaged or unusable, and displacement may put pressure on host education systems meaning that capacity for all children to be in school is limited. In these situations, local partners may establish education programmes to try to bridge this gap, and where partners are not experienced education providers, capacity building programmes can support them to provide high quality interventions until children are able to access formal education opportunities again. Capacity building programmes may also target national education systems which have been weakened by the emergency.

To read about capacity building for education in practice, click on the picture below:

Education Learning Network, Lebanon – LSESD

When should we use a capacity building for education programme? 

  • When education systems have been damaged or weakened by the emergency
  • When local partners are operating education programmes with limited experience
  • When the national formal education system does not have capacity to provide quality education for all children
  • When you have strong experience in education programmes or can partner with those who do to provide input and resources

How to develop a capacity building for education programme

Ensure that your needs assessment includes information on children’s access to education and an awareness of the exisitng formal education provision available and ways to access this. Non formal education programmes should not prevent children from accessing formal education opportunities if these are available.

You should also assess the needs of the partners you are working with, to identify experience and training they already have in education and to identify gaps and areas they themselves are finding especially challenging.

Develop a training plan

Based on the needs assessment, work together with local partners to understand availability and willingness to participate in capacity building activities, including:

  • How often should the training take place (e.g. weekly, monthly, quarterly?)
  • Where should the training take place
  • Which topics should be included

Training should be based on the key areas identified in the INEE Minimum Standards for education to ensure that capacity building supports partners to come closer to international standards.

See the case study above for an example of a one-year quarterly training programme.

Other useful training resources are:

Deliver training

Use experienced facilitators to deliver training, and consider bringing in people with expertise in specific areas to deliver one-off sessions.

Ensure that training includes a balance of teaching and active learning where participants have the opportunity to practice what they are learning (e.g. through role-plays or developing activity plans) and a chance to ask questions and share their experiences with one another.

Support referrals and signpost other available support and services

Ensure that you remain aware of the context of education provision in your setting, and ensure that children in non-formal education programmes have the opportunity to access formal education when and if this becomes available.

Be aware of organisations and services which can provide help or advice for children in need of additional support, such as health services and child protection agencies and NGOs, and invite representatives from these services to attend training sessions and share information with participants.

Mentoring and follow up

If possible, carry out mentoring visits to education projects to assess implementation of training and understand progress and challenges.

Tools and resources

Additional tools and resources, including further materials on the INEE standards and practical training tools for capacity building for education are available here

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