AKA Dhaka hosts visitors to observe the KIX project | Aga Khan Academies

AKA Dhaka hosts visitors to observe the KIX project

21 March 2023

On 20 March 2023, the Aga Khan Academy Dhaka hosted a group of visitors from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the High Commission of Canada in Bangladesh to observe the Knowledge and Innovation Exchange (KIX) project activities at the school level, meet with the teachers to understand their experience, and determine how GAC can support them further in future endeavours. 

The Centre for the Study of Learning and Performance of Concordia University – in partnership with the Aga Khan Academies, Wilfred Laurier University and World Vision Canada – leads the KIX project to improve English literacy skills of early graders in Bangladesh, Rwanda and Kenya. As part of this, the Professional Development Centre of the Academy in Dhaka is implementing the KIX project in 13 government primary schools across eight divisions in Bangladesh, which consists of 26 teachers and over 1000 students. 

The day began with a visit to one of the KIX-supported government schools, Kurmitola Model Government Primary School, by GAC’s Senior Education Specialist Ms Zahra Boodhwani, Mr AHM Mohiuddin of Canada’s Field Support Service Programme (FSSP), Head of Academy Bill O’Hearn and the Academy’s Head of Professional Development and Outreach Md Musle Uddin Bhuiya. The school's students and staff gave the visitors a warm reception, with Head Teacher Ms Jesmin Akter introducing everyone and sharing an overview of the school.

“A project like KIX is of great importance to improve teaching and learning experiences in our classrooms,” Ms Jesmin said. “It directly contributes to the teachers’ capacity and students’ learning in early grade English language acquisition. The initiative also significantly increased students’ participation in the class and attendance.”

The visitors were then invited to observe Assistant Teacher Ms Masuda Parvin’s English class in Grade 1. After attending the class for some time, the visitors shared their thoughts on the classroom environment, teacher’s delivery and student engagement. They appreciated the teacher’s sincere efforts in implementing the KIX tools in her classroom and making learning a joyful experience for her students. Given that the project focuses on literacy, schools under the KIX project utilise two tools within the Learning Toolkit+: A Balanced Reading Approach for Children Always Designed to Achieve Best Results for All (ABRACADABRA) and Repository of Ebooks And Digital Stories (READS). The former is an interactive instructional software to teach foundational literacy skills, while the latter provides an organised catalogue of free digital stories.

After the visit to the school, the guests met at the Academy where they were joined by Head of Cooperation Joe Goodings, the High Commission of Canada for Bangladesh, the Aga Khan Development Network Resident Diplomatic Representative H.E. Munir M Merali, and Chief Executive Officer of the Aga Khan Education Service, Bangladesh Ms Salimah Kassam. Ms Zahra and Mr Mohiuddin received a quick tour of the Academy and later reflected on their visit to the Kurmitola Model Government Primary School with the rest of the group.

Mr Musle said he is looking forward to future collaborations to promote English literacy skills across all communities in Bangladesh.

“The visit has reinforced our commitment to excellence and innovation in education through implementing the KIX project,” Musle said. “We look forward to continued collaboration with our project partners and working towards a brighter future for the students and communities we serve.”