The opportunities and challenges of collaborating with government and other partners on the Ethiopia READ program

Presentation delivered at CIES 2017 (Atlanta). As the READ TA project’s main focus is on providing technical assistance to and building the capacity of the Ethiopian Ministry of Education and its Regional Education Bureaus to develop and conduct the foundational components of a reading program (i.e., curriculum development, in-service and pre-service teacher training, and teacher support), the project has had to work through government systems to accomplish its objectives. This has provided great opportunities along with challenges. While there are some activities in which the project has direct involvement in the inputs and outcomes (curriculum development workshops, training of trainers, incorporating technology), there are others which are largely outside of the control of the project (printing of textbooks, training of teachers, government approvals). But all activities are necessary for the reading program to be successful. This requires establishing strong collaborative relationships with government counterparts and having the flexibility to adjust to the ever-changing situation.