Professional Development Opportunities for Kazakhstani Teachers

Kazakhstan does not suffer from the deficiency of professional development programs launched for newly coming teachers due to the broad resonance after State Program of Educational Development 2011-2020 (2011) brought out. Though in order to gauge the efficiency of these programs, one should be aware of the results so far, which I will shed light on in this post.


A real revolution in the professional development of our teachers became the change in their mindset due to the consolidation effort of such programs as Centers of Excellence (CoE), Bolashak, Fullbright FLTA and Critical thinking seminars in NIS. In terms of these programs teachers faced the drastic transformation in their vision, due to fact that all of the participants who have undergone these programs were taught how to think critically, how to write reflections on their and other colleagues’ lessons; moreover, teachers were taught not to adhere to the program rigidly but to use their own interpretation of the material so as to convey it more persuasively and in a more clear way to students.

The vast majority of beginning teachers who took part in any of these programs admitted that these trainings and internships not only improved their methodological arsenal, moreover, they influenced teachers’ outlook and the whole attitude to the profession. In this respect we can draw a conclusion that altogether these programs stand in good stead for the realization of the SPED program which was determined to equip teachers to bring up the new geneKazakhstan does not suffer from the deficiency of professional development programs launched for newly coming teachers due to the broad resonance after State Program of Educational Development 2011-2020 (2011) brought out. Though in order to gauge the efficiency of these programs, one should be aware of the results so far, which I will shed light on in this post.ration of independent, competent and critically reflective learners, by training the teachers how to become good role-models for such students.

Another important issue SPED campaign aspired to enhance was the overall teacher’s prestige in Kazakhstan by dint of all the professional development programs, thus, encouraging the teachers to participate in the seminars, scientific-research workshops and symposiums, research projects, competitions and so on. For this reason annually, for three years now, the MoES holds the Republican competition among teachers in Kazakhstan, which is called Uzdik ustaz. As the official site of Akimat of Astana reports (2014), in 2014 48 best teachers of the country were awarded with Uzdik ustaz-2014 medals and cash prize in the amount of 1 million 852 thousand KZT. Such results encourage the prospective students to think of the enrollment into pedagogical profession along with motivating the in-service teachers to be active and to strive to the highest achievements’.

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image source: astana.gov.kz

The programs like “With the diploma to the village”, “Bolashak Internship”, “Fulbright FLTA” also are very valuable for our educational evolution, because altogether they are focusing at the immersion of fiscal equalization in Kazakhstan, due to the fact that the participants have the equal opportunities to get quality education and prestigious job perspectives no matter whether they are from rural or urban area along with overall promotion of pedagogic craft (Sarinzhipov & Ruby, 2014). And as the statistics of the programs reports, the dynamics of staffing for the five-year period in the rural areas signifies the exponential upsurge in figures comparing with the results reported within the piloting year of the program, thus eliminating the problem with the overall teachers shortage.

To crown it all, it must be admitted that despite the fact Kazakhstan still faces challenges in its journey towards a knowledge-based society, the introduction of professional development programs mentioned above have a positive effect on human development and capacity building in general.

References

Astana Akimat Official Website. (2014, October 3). The Best Teachers of the Year Were Honored in the Capital. Retrieved from astana.gov.kz/en/modules/material/6264

Kazakhstan. The Ministry of Education and Science. (2011). The state program of education development till 2020. Astana: the Ministry of Education and Science. Retrieved from http://www.edu.gov.kz/en

Sarinzhipov, A. & Ruby, A. (2014). Education Reform and Internationalization. The Case of School Reform in Kazakhstan. In D. Bridges (Eds.), Towards the Next Stages of Reform in Kazakhstan. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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