The Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES) has organised a learning exchange between six provincial education and sports bureaus implementing the Fit for School Programme, which focuses on the daily practice of washing hands with soap, brushing teeth with fluoride toothpaste, and bi-annual deworming.
The learning exchange took place in Thakek city, Khammouane Province from 3 to 4 April 2017.
The sixty participants in the exchange came from the provinces of Khammouane, Bolikhamxay, Bokeo, Champasak, Vientiane Capital and Oudomxay.
A delegation of the Kampot Provincial Office of Education in Cambodia participated in the exchange, as the province of focus for the Fit for School Programme in Cambodia.
Mr. Somsanith, the director of the Provincial Department of Education and Sports of Oudomxay province, emphasised to include the implementation of the programme in the provincial strategic plans saying, it will then be followed up with regular monitoring and provides a system of accountability for both the province and the districts � this is the way to align initiatives and support and ultimately reach the SDGs.
The exchange focused on experiences and challenges in implementing Fit for School. Health status and school performance are closely related.
The discussions therefore revolved around the question of how to effectively manage the limited resources in the education sector in order to establish routines in hygiene that lead to behavioural changes in children. For example, group activities are a way to address logistical challenges like short break times.
The Regional Fit for School Programme is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, as part of the German Development Cooperation and South-East Asian Ministers of Education Organisations Regional Center for Educational Innovation and Technology (SEAMEO INNOTECH) in the Philippines, Lao PDR, Cambodia and Indonesia.
The programme has been supporting the MoES of Lao PDR since December 2011. In Lao PDR, the programme was begun in 22 public primary schools in Vientiane Capital. Today, this number has increased to over 400 schools nationwide, benefitting over 42,000 children in Lao PDR.
Fit for school model schools have been established in all provinces of Lao PDR and serve as good practice examples for other primary schools in their districts and provinces.
Source: Lao News Agency