JICA Knowledge Co-Creation Program (Group & Region Focus) 2017 “Strengthening Effective Teaching toward Inclusive Education” implemented
Kochi University provided the JICA Knowledge Co-Creation Program (Group & Region Focus) “Strengthening Effective Teaching toward Inclusive Education” course from Thursday, April 13 to Friday, April 28.
This training course was commissioned by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to the Center for International Collaboration as part of Japan’s official development assistance (ODA) with the aim of inviting 15 administrative officials involved in this field and in-service teachers from six South and Central American countries (Uruguay, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Paraguay, Venezuela and Bolivia) and providing them with the opportunity to learn support and inclusive education promotion measures that they can apply in their own countries by seeing how they are practiced in real-life educational situations with their own eyes.
In this training, inclusive education experts gave participants lectures to help them deepen their understanding of the inclusive education and special needs education systems of Japan and develop better understanding of issues facing their own countries through comparison between their countries and Japan. They also visited places where inclusive education is actually used, such as the special needs school affiliated with the Faculty of Education and Namegawa Gakuen, a school run by Kochi City, to gain first-hand learning experience about teaching plans and methods, as well as experience how inclusive education and special needs education are actually practiced in Japan through communication with the students of these schools.
The International Seminar on Inclusive Education, in which five experts were invited from Scandinavian countries and the U.S. to give presentations on inclusive education initiatives in their countries, was also held during the training, on Tuesday, April 18, to give participants the opportunity to further broaden their horizons by learning the situations and challenges faced by different countries of the world.
The training was closed with participants creating their own action plans to put what they had learned in Japan into practice in their own countries. Participants were very satisfied with this program as suggested by comments like “I learned how schools, communities, prefectures and universities can cooperate in inclusive education. I was also impressed by the quality of the plans developed by the schools, in which individual activities are designed strategically and in line with the concept,” and “The school visits taught me how to communicate effectively with teachers and students, as well as about classroom teaching methods, curriculums, task-based learning, and so on. I would like to make the most of what I have learned as it will be a practical model for our country.”
Kochi University is planning to continue to provide international training on inclusive education in cooperation with educational institutions in Kochi Prefecture next year and afterwards.