USAID-funded Pre-Step Awarded Scholarships: The USAID-funded Pre-Service Teacher Education Programme (Pre-Step) awarded 410 scholarships to talented Pakistani students training as Elementary School Teachers (EST) while completing the two-year Associate Degree in Education (ADE) and four-year BEd (Hons) Elementary programmes, in several small yet lively ceremonies organised in four provinces of Pakistan.
USAID-funded Pre-Step Awarded Scholarships in these 12 universities colleges
Pre-Step Awards Scholarships were awarded to a total of 12 universities and colleges including Karakoram International University, Government College of Education Gilgit (Male), Elementary College of Gilgit (Female), Regional Institute for Teacher Education (RITE) Female Abbottabad, RITE Female Peshawar, University of Peshawar, Hazara University, Elementary College of Education Hussainabad (Male), Elementary College of Education Hyderabad (Female), University of Punjab, Government College of Elementary Teachers (GCET) Faisalabad and GCET Dera Ghazi Khan.
ADE and BEd Programs Details:
The newly-introduced ADE and BEd (Hons) programmes have been a collaborative effort between the provincial departments of education and the Higher Education Commission (HEC), with support provided through its USAID-funded Pre-Step in Pakistan.
The ADE programme is designed to be offered in four semesters whereas the BEd (Hons) programme will cover eight semesters. This will be a significant change from the annual system followed by RITEs, and the hybrid annual/semester system followed by some universities in Pakistan. The scholarships will provide support for up to two years to complete an ADE programme and up to four years for BEd (Hons) at the piloting Usaid/Pre-STEP partner institutions that will lead to a qualification that meets the academic requirements for employment as a teacher in public schools.
USAID-funded Pre-Step Awarded Scholarships Merit
This USAID-funded Pre-Step Awarded Scholarships programs were awarded to pre-service teachers on merit basis. The criteria for scholarship required the recipients to be citizens of Pakistan, obtain at least 60 per cent marks in FA/FSC, pass the scholarship entrance test, and have 85 per cent attendance in ADE/BEd classes with a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA per semester.
Scholarships valued at Rs20,000 per student per semester have been distributed at the conclusion of the first semester of the ADE/BEd programmes. Pre-STEP is a US$75 million USAID-funded programme working in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and HEC to improve the quality of basic education in Pakistan by strengthening teachers’ education and teaching skills. The programme directly impacts new as well as practicing teachers by helping them to gain revised and upgraded teacher qualifications. Pre-STEP collaboratively builds upon the existing structures and programmes in Pakistan and supports 15 universities and 75 teacher colleges as instruments for change of academic standards in teacher education.