ADEA participates in 13th Annual SMASE-WECSA Association Conference

The 13th Annual Strengthening Mathematics and Science Education in West, East, Central and Southern Africa (SMASE-WECSA) Conference, was held in Nairobi, Kenya October 28-November 1, 2013, on the theme ‘Rethinking the Strategies for the Future Sustainability of SMASE-WECSA’.

The SMASE program in Africa concerns 36 countries and has been fully supported by JICA over the last 15 years. It consists of pre and in-service teacher training of math and science teachers with an innovative and effective pedagogy developed by Japanese experts and their African counterparts.  

The Conference was held at a time when JICA is likely to disengage itself from SMASE-Kenya after more than a decade of cooperation. Over the years JICA had used the Centre for Mathematics, Science and Technology Education in Africa (CEMESTEA) of Kenya to train trainers of trainers from 36 African countries.  The withdrawal by JICA will have far reaching implications for the future of the SMASE-WECSA Association (now renamed SMASE-Africa)̶, hence the theme of the conference..

JICA’s withdrawal will also have implications for ADEA’s WG on Mathematics and Science Education (WGMSE) as WGMSE is led by both JICA and MOEST Kenya. The three institutions have been pushing the agenda of quality science and mathematics teaching in Africa.

During the meeting, ADEA highlighted how mathematics, science and technology are at the core of the paradigm shifts it is advocating.  Emphasizing the three areas of skills, competencies and qualifications put forth by the ADEA Strategic Policy Framework ADEA exposed the convergence between ADEA’s mission and that of SMASE-Africa.
New options are currently being sought to ensure the sustainability of the mathematics and science program in Africa given its importance for the future development of the continent.