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At the Innovating Education in Africa Expo in Senegal last October, the African Union acknowledged VVOB as one of the top 50 education innovators in Africa for its work in Rwanda. Chantal Kabanda Dusabe, education advisor for VVOB in Rwanda, accepted the award at this flagship event that recognises and celebrates outstanding education innovators in Africa: “Heartwarming”


It was H.E. Prof. Sarah Anyang Agbor, commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology of the African Union Commission who presented VVOB with the award for our innovations in promoting effective school leadership in Rwanda. Our approach and lessons learnt from effective school leadership in the country are already being shared with and adapted to other programmes in Africa, such as our programme on agricultural entrepreneurship education in DR Congo and inclusive education in South Africa.

Testing and bringing innovations to scale and doing this hand-in-hand with government institutions has been part of the DNA of VVOB for years now
Chantal Kabanda Dusabe, VVOB Education Advisor

School leadership in Rwanda

VVOB is proud to have been recognised by the African Union for its innovative approach towards effective school leadership in Rwanda. We work together with Rwanda Education Board (REB) and the University of Rwanda’s College of Education (URCE) in bringing professional development programmes to school leaders so they can effectively carry out their important role.


School leaders embark on this process with an initial 1-year training on Effective School Leadership. The programme is based on five standards for effective school leadership:

  • Creating strategic direction for the school
  • Leading in learning
  • Leading in teaching
  • Managing the school as an organisation
  • Working with parents and the wider community

After completing this initial training, sector education officers further coach school leaders with the organisation and facilitation of professional learning communities. This approach – developed, piloted and researched by the School Leadership and Management Unit of Rwanda Education Board and VVOB – has been found to be a cost-effective form of in-service support.

Expanding partnerships

Other promising innovations which VVOB is currently piloting or scaling-up in Africa include Teaching at the Right Level, learning through play and gender-responsive pedagogy in early childhood education. So, watch this space, there’s more to come, as we expand our partnerships to take the most promising innovations to scale across the continent.