Relinquishing control: A case study of Rwandan preservice interns as school-based teacher trainers Book Chapter

Dwyer, E, de Dieu, ANJ. (2016). Relinquishing control: A case study of Rwandan preservice interns as school-based teacher trainers . 3-24.

cited authors

  • Dwyer, E; de Dieu, ANJ



  • In 2009, Rwanda's Parliament mandated an overnight shift in the language in which pupils study in public schools: From French to English. The consequences of this shift required immediate adjustments by every teacher in the country, as well as teacher trainers. The authors - a teacher trainer from the U.S. and a student at the National University of Rwanda (NUR) - offer the story of how English language teachers in Rwanda, namely those at the university and in an NGO called the International Education Exchange (IEE), addressed this shift. The approach was based on four key principals: ') observations by a veteran NUR professor who noted that all instructors would become both English students and English teachers in one fell swoop, thereby entailing their need for both linguistic and professional development as unintentional foreign language instructors; 2) a conceptual framework of responsible English teaching that promotes materials development based on the immediate needs of the students, rather than the traditions of Western textbook authors; 3) the efforts by IEE that promoted school-based teacher trainers to assist veteran teachers with the transition; and 4) an internship workshop program that treated pre-service teachers as trainers such that they could operationalize modern foreign language teaching techniques with veteran teachers accustomed to less effective traditional lecturing styles. The chapter tells the story of this workshop model and describes instances of compelling in-class teacher presentation skills, student intrigue, economic barriers, and occasions of professional and political resistance. The authors posit that such teaching techniques and professional development workshops can foster literacy development with an abundance of students, even in poor communities.

publication date

  • January 1, 2016

International Standard Book Number (ISBN) 13

start page

  • 3

end page

  • 24