Building Bridges between the School and the Community: an in-depth examination of school and community linkages

Case Studies & Research
55 p.

UNESCO Harare Cluster office initiated this study in five countries that are under its responsibility with the aim of documenting best practices on school-community linkages and to advocate for these best practices in the fight against HIV and AIDS. The study dates back to a sub-regional colloquium meeting held in November 2004 in Harare with the theme, Teachers in a World with AIDS. During this meeting, the issue of building linkages between the community and schools was emphasised as an effective way of promoting the teaching profession and the fight against HIV and AIDS. It is commonly found that schools and communities find themselves playing very separate roles in delivering HIV/AIDS education, when their efforts would be maximized if they integrated their approaches and strengthened their linkages. This report presents Malawi's experiences based on in depth study of two schools, Mpingu primary school in Lilongwe Rural West and Chinsapo primary school in Lilongwe peri-urban. These two education districts were selected because of their participation in another UNESCO supported initiative on District level Education Management and Information Systems (DEMIS) in an HIV and AIDS context. This was to ensure that the outcomes of the project had direct relevance and impact on the DEMIS project as well. The sample of the respondents drawn from the schools and surrounding communities comprised teachers, pupils, parents, members of school management committees, members of parents/teachers associations, religious organisations, representatives from NGOs, local leaders including chiefs, political leaders, health and social workers.

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