4 regions: Bilasuvar, Lankaran, Sumgayit and Siyazan
Children benefited: 611 Parents benefited: 540
- In 2012,only 23 % of urban children and 8 % of rural children had access to pre-school education facilities in Azerbaijan
- Nationwide only 17 % of communities have kindergartens available within acceptable distance
- Ratio of kindergartens:children in 2012 is 1:600, following a teacher-centered model
UAFA piloted an alternative, low-cost model of pre-school education to meet the needs of children excluded from the kindergarten system because of poverty, rural location and disability. This pilot was funded by the EU from 2012-2014. The outcomes of this pilot were externally evaluated by the Ministry of Education and approved as an example of a community-based model.
Child-centered services are more suited to the changing economic environment in Azerbaijan, because they encourage self-motivation, communication and active learning. The model is as follows:
- 1 kindergarten methodologist supervises hub of 4 pre-school groups in local villages
- Methodologist is given training in child-centered methodologies and hub management
- Methodologist visits each pre-school once per week to monitor activities and give feedback
- Children aged 2-6 years attend group for 4 hours/week by age group; centres are open every day
- Children with disabilities are included to the groups
- Parents learn new parenting skills, and are encouraged to participate in the groups to support learning
- Modern methods of early childhood development used – strong emphasis on learning through play
Countries such as Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Scandinavian countries, the United States and France have greatly increased their competitiveness by investing heavily in preschool education.
It is UAFA’s goal that every village in Azerbaijan will have an inclusive pre-school in the near future. This can be achieved through strong partnerships with the State and private sectors, and community efforts.