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The funding received from the Footprints program is integrated into our 3-year quality education program in the Sotang district. The 3rd year of the program was conducted from November 2010 to September 2011.  It forms part of an ambitious program to improve the education of the vast Solu Khumbu region of Nepal with over 47,000 children, nearly 1500 teachers in 267 schools that extend from the impoverished foothills to the base of Mt Everest.

The Teacher Training program is helping to improve the education of 11,941 children, 379 teachers in 70 schools in the Sotang district, which is part of the Solu Khumbu region. Unlike its more prosperous Sherpa communities that live beneath of the shadow of Everest, Sotang is in dire need of support. Educational facilities are basic with some schools accommodating over 100 children in one classroom, where teachers have little or no training and where children regard textbooks as a luxury. It is therefore not surprising that educational outcomes are among the lowest in Nepal.

Program Objectives

  • Develop child-centred teacher training methods
  • Provide relevant and appropriate teaching materials and resources to schools
  • Increase teacher and student attendance, increase girls’ enrolment in schools, and reduce drop-out rates of children from schools
  • Promote mechanisms for reliable and fair annual assessment of student achievement
  • Ensure that the key teachers are selected and extra training given for their capacity building in classroom support and management

Program Outcomes

  • Improved teacher training as is evident by the workshops attended by nearly 300 teachers
  • Access to more relevant and appropriate teaching material and resources - including regular supplies of textbooks and writing books to all schools in the district
  • Increased teacher and student attendance and girls’ enrolment and reduced student drop-out rates – with encouraging figures over the last two years
  • Improved understanding of quality student assessment by trained teachers and Government agencies  - as is evident from the marked improvement of support by the district education offices
  • Development of a team of education resource personnel and a Key Teachers Program to implement ongoing training and support activities – again encouraging signs with 16 outstanding teachers being selected for advanced training.  


There have been significant ongoing challenges in improving the level of teacher training in rural communities. These include:

  • The commitments and skill of the teachers is often disappointing – simply put they have no idea how to teach
  • The percentage of new untrained teachers being appointed.
  • Knowledge of subject content often very weak
  • Parents often don’t understand the value of education, and encourage students to work as porters, help in the fields, look after the children.
  • School Management Committees and parents and even headmasters often have a poor understanding of the role they can play in improving education standards in the school.
  • Lack of teacher learning materials
  • Lack of support for the poorest students.
  • Class sizes are incredibly high with small dark classrooms
  • Lack of Stationery for the children
  • Limited areas or facilities for the children for recreation.

Future plans

Activities in Sotang provide part of an overall 9-year program in the Solu Khumbu region. In November 2011 the program expanded to its 2nd 3-year program cycle  into the nearby district of Nele with 10,606 children, 282 teachers in 53 schools.  However to ensure the sustainability of the program and improve educational standards further refresher training and key teacher training workshops will continue and further educational resources supplied to the Sotang district.

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