Education in Action
Pakistan is passing through a very difficult time. It is surrounded by huge challenges such as terrorism, poverty, electricity load shedding, gas load shedding, shortage of water, illiteracy, environmental degradation, etc. Pakistan is running out of resources to meet these challenges. It is desperately looking for resources to address these challenges. Due to the unprecedented increase in terrorism in Pakistan, investments and improvement in the developmental projects have gone down terribly. Unemployment and underemployment are increasing every day. Educational institutions cannot afford to remain silent or pursue the policy of wait and see. The educational institutions need to re-think or re-define their role in addressing the challenges being faced by Pakistan. Educational institutions have so much to offer in the shape of human (students, teachers, volunteers, parents) and material (physical infrastructure such as buildings, classrooms, libraries, computer labs, science labs, transports, etc) resources to address the present challenges. Service Learning program provides an exciting opportunity to educational institutions to use these resources for both meeting the educational needs of students and addressing serious social problems.
A New Beginning
YES Network Pakistan has played a pioneer role in introducing and starting Service Learning program in Pakistan. YES Network Pakistan in collaboration with Catholic Board of Education, Lahore launched the Service Learning program in the leading Catholic Schools of Pakistan to enrich learning process of students, to mainstream students into the development process and to connect theory to practice. It is launched to re-define the role of students in the educational institutions from passive beneficiaries to active citizens that are making efforts to address critical issues being faced by the country. It aims at enabling students in applying their knowledge and skills for bringing positive change in the society. It is designed to re-define the role of teachers from leading the students to facilitating the students in experimenting new ideas. It is launched to help students to develop the ability to discover for themselves rather than wait for commands from teachers. The overall goal of attaching service learning program into curriculum is to help students develop positive values that can serve them throughout their lives. To accomplish this, service learning program is launched throughout all the grades. Service Learning program provides a remarkable opportunity to educational institutions to renew and reform. It provides teachers with an important instructional tool for enhancing student performance and participation. By integrating service component into the instruction, service learning program enables teachers to make the content more meaningful to students while developing their ownership for learning. Service learning is a unique teaching methodology as it provides an opportunity for students to use knowledge and skills in real life situations.
Service learning has emerged as an inspiring strategy to energize schools, to change the way teachers carries out their responsibilities, to meet the unmet service needs of our society and to enhance the curriculum by extending learning beyond the classroom. Service learning is an organized effort to combine service objectives with learning objectives. It is a systematic approach to engage students in delivery of service to others by using gained knowledge from the classroom.
- Sensitized and trained 50 principals of leading educational institutions.
- Over 1200 Teachers trained and engaged.
- Over 8,000 students of all ages involved in planning and execution of service projects.
|Sensitization Sessions with the Principals of Catholic Schools.||2007|
|Follow-up Sessions and Meetings with the Principals.||2007-2008|
|Approval of launching of Service Learning Program by Catholic Board of Education Lahore.||2008|
|Launching of Service Learning Program in 11 Catholic Schools.||March 2009|
|Training of Teachers (approximately 400).||April – May 2009|
|Implementation of Service Learning Program in 11 Catholic Schools.||March 2009 to January 2010|
|Launching of First-ever Service Learning Competition.||March 2009 to January 2010|
|Service Learning Exhibitions.||December 2009 to January 2010|
|Replication and Scale-up||On-going|