Certification & Endorsement

Guidelines for Facilitation of the Fundisa for Change Continuing Professional Development Programmes

Fundisa for Change CPD Approach/es and Materials

The Fundisa for Change Programme has an explicit approach: it seeks to support teachers understanding of, and capacity for teaching environmental knowledge and concerns as found within the national curriculum Subjects, and their cognate disciplines. It broadens knowledge of teachers to engage with social-ecological concepts, issues and solutions and wider sustainability practices. It further seeks to strengthen disciplinary knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, situational knowledge, practical and foundational learning. It does this through supporting critically reflective and applied practice in which new concepts and approaches are tried out and reflected on in classrooms.

The professional development programmes will proceed by way of the following generally agreed upon processes (with local contextual variation):

  • To be offered within a partnership approach involving HEIs, DBE officials (especially subject advisors), teachers, environmental organisations and other key stakeholders (to be defined at cluster level)
  • To where possible, be linked into processes of supporting Professional Learning Communities at district and provincial levels
  • A carefully designed, facilitator led, inter-active professional development programme that has a strong structure, but with opportunities for teacher participation, practical and reflective engagement with concepts, approaches and ideas, informed by TPD research and best practices.
  • Commitment to, maintenance of and ensuring the highest possible quality in CPD programme design, implementation and assessment through ongoing evaluation and reflection within a wider community of practice
  • Willingness to contribute to a national system of evaluation which builds knowledge of CPD and environmental learning in the SA Schooling system (co-ordinated by the Fundisa for Change co-ordination ‘hub’)

The Fundisa for Change Programme is supported by a set of materials that provide for the following:

  1. Generic orientation to key issues such as knowledge, curriculum knowledge, environment and sustainability knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and approaches and assessment practice.
  2. Specific environment and sustainability content knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge and assessment practice as relevant to specific subjects and phases and grades in the South African school system.
  3. It is closely aligned and integrated with the CAPS curriculum framework and imperatives. As it is a teacher education programme, it also seeks to expand teachers’ curriculum knowledge and expertise.
  4. The materials and CPD framework are designed to articulate with, and to allow teachers to reflect on textbooks and their contents and use in classrooms. The materials are also designed to provide teachers with access to additional learning support materials that can support classroom practice.

Certification and Assessments

Approach to Certification (short to medium term)

The Fundisa for Change programme will work with a multi-pronged approach to accreditation of programmes via:

  1. University based short course, certification and quality management systems; where possible this option will be linked to options 2 and 3 below.
  2. Interim use of a unit standard from the ETDP SETA as a general guide to frame the certification of the programmes (SAQA US ID13461: Design, organize and critically evaluate an original environmental learning programme). Note: It is not possible to use the unit standard fully as it currently exists as it is dated, especially in relation to the new requirements of the Curriculum and Assessment Policy Statements. However, in principle much of what is in the unit standard is useful for guiding the programme. It is also important to note that this Unit Standard is at a level 5. Each organization wanting to use this unit standard and the SETA system will need to ensure they are registered and accredited to be able to use this unit standard.
  3. All partners offering the programme will need to ensure they are a SACE endorsed provider. Partners will also seek SACE endorsement for the programme so that the programmes can contribute to ongoing CPD points for teacher professional development as per the policy on CTPD points (SACE & DBE, 2010).
  4. The possibility also exists to integrate aspects of the Fundisa for Change Programme into formally accredited full qualifications in Higher Education Institutions within the Minimum Requirements for Teacher Education Qualifications Policy (DHET, 2012).

Longer Term Certification

The Fundisa for Change programme will work with the SETA system as it unfolds towards the 2016 changed focus on integrated knowledge, practice and workplace experience standards. It will pilot test approaches that can inform the development of a framework for a nationally useful CPD programme for teachers.

Two Agreed upon Immediate Options for Certification of Fundisa for Change CPD Programmes

Outcomes to be achieved:

  • Subject Knowledge and Learning (Theory): Show improved understanding of environment and sustainability subject knowledge in the context of a specific Subject and Phase.
  • Pedagogical Knowledge and Learning (Practice): Show ability to use appropriate teaching methods and assessment approaches for a specified subject knowledge, skills and values
  • Situated Knowledge and Learning (Context): Relate subject specific environment and sustainability content knowledge broader issues and contexts
  • Practical Knowledge and Experience (Work Experience): Design, develop, implement and reflectively review a lesson plan / sequence of lesson plans relevant to an environmental and sustainability content focus in a particular Subject and Phase/ Grade.

Fundisa for Change CPD Framework: These outcomes are integrated in and through the Fundisa for Change CPD framework and processes to be designed at cluster level, and will be mediated and modeled by the Fundisa for Change framework, materials and other relevant resources that focus on:

  • Know your subject
  • Improve your teaching practice
  • Improve your assessment practice [in a subject of your choice]

The focus on subject knowledge, pedagogy and assessment takes cognizance of the core of teaching practice, but does not ignore the wider framework of whole school and community engaged education processes, and the social-ecological contexts in which environmental learning takes place.

Notional hours (contact time – 20 hours; and work experience time – 40 hours)

For a module to carry the equivalent of 6 credits (as per the existing SAQA unit standards benchmark being used to frame the accreditation options), there should be approximately 20 hours of contact time and 40 hours of work experience / application and reflection / assignment development and completion time.

Broad framework for assignment task

The assignment task/s should be designed so that the following broad assessment criteria can be met (assessment criteria can be adapted):

  • Evidence of acquisition and command of environment / sustainability subject content knowledge relevant to teaching in a particular subject and phase
  • Evidence of successful application of appropriate teaching methods and assessment strategies for the relevant subject knowledge
  • Evidence of being able to make situational connections between subject content knowledge, pedagogy, assessment and social-ecological issues and contexts and educational contexts
  • Evidence of reflecting critically and constructively on practice

Should the programme be offered for Subject Advisors, the same criteria would apply, but would need to be contextualized for their specific professional roles and responsibilities (e.g. evidence of supporting teachers’ to reflect critically and constructively on practice or evidence of being able to support teachers to acquire a good command of environment / sustainability subject content knowledge relevant to teaching in a particular subject and phase).

Assessment process

Assessment can be via submitted tasks, shorter assignment tasks, evidence of classroom practice and materials, curriculum artefacts compiled into a portfolio of learning (commensurate with the number of credits specified, not in excess thereof; and focused on the evidence sought for achievement of the learning outcomes outlined above). Individual institutions should make decisions on how to structure the assessment process, but it is recommended that strategies be used that allow for appropriate assessment of workplace-based tasks to be undertaken by teachers, as the programme has an intention to support applied, improved practice.

The above mentioned learning outcomes hold for the 3 credit option. The difference will be in the scope of the evidence provided and the reduced contact time (10 hours contact time and 20 hours work experience time).

Assessment evidence expected:

  • Evidence of some acquisition of new knowledge relevant to a subject s…
  • Evidence of being able to use a new teaching approach and assessment method (e.g. designing higher order questions for assessment)
  • Evidence of developing a lesson plan that integrates new knowledge, teaching approach and assessment strategies in the Subject concerned in a relevant social-ecological and educational context.
  • Evidence of having taught the lesson with critical reflective comments on the processes.

Processes for claiming CPD points:

  • The schedule for the course must be communicated to the National Co-ordinator for Fundisa for Change who will inform SACE of the date, time and venue for the course.
  • All providers must maintain a SACE register (provided from SACE) and a FFC register for the full duration of the course during the training which teachers must fill and complete with id numbers and SACE numbers.
  • The register and information must also be captured on the excel sheet that has been provided. The register and excel sheet will be completed and submitted to SACE – provider@sace.org.za .
  • Providers must provide participants with a certificate once they submit their POE’s for FFC if declared competent, which teachers will use as part of their portfolio for SACE. Certificates can have SACE logo if the provider is a SACE endorsed provider and the course has SACE endorsement.

Teachers will log onto the SACE portal and input their information and claim their CPD points themselves. Providers cannot claim CPD points on