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Students Prepare to Lead School Reforms in Georgia

Some two dozen new master’s students and several invited guests celebrated the launch of the program at Ilia State University, established with the support of USAID’s Education Management Project.

​Sophio Makharadze, a first-year student in the master’s of education administration program at Ilia State University (ISU), is excited about her new career path. After two years at ISU, she will gain the management skills necessary to improve administration at institutions across the education sector.

“I will become a leader, able to fully understand and contribute to the development of education sector in my country,” she said at the launch celebration of the program in November 2009.

“With the ministry’s decentralization of management functions to the regions and schools, ISU wanted to create a program that would give regional administrators and school principals the skills to generate educational excellence within their localities. Strong education is really the key to Georgia’s future economic growth, and ISU sees the need to build education leaders’ skills to produce excellence in education for Georgia’s children to achieve that growth,” said Simon Janashia, project director at ISU.
 
Gigi Tevzadze, rector of Ilia State University, discusses ongoing education reforms with John Bass, U.S. ambassador to Georgia.The master’s program — designed to meet international standards — will be led by Georgian professors, who will be supported by professors from the project’s partner UCLA. The curriculum is developed in accordance with requirements of the Bologna Process—which makes academic degree standards more comparable throughout Europe—and offers theoretical courses and practical field experience. “This is the first such program in the country developed in cooperation with a well-known, highly ranked university in the United States of America,” said Gigi Tevzadze.
 
ISU’s rector David Liparteliani, a teacher with five years of experience, said he came to ISU to develop the skills and the vision to lead. “I believe I came to the right place and soon I will become a highly qualified professional, an international-level administrator, able to better lead any kind of educational institution any place in the country,” he said.
 
USAID is improving the long-term capacity of Georgian institutions to better manage the education system and lead its transformation. Read more about the Georgia Education Management Program.
 
Within two years, students of ISU’s new master’s of education administration program will gain knowledge and practical skills that will enable them to become leaders in Georgia’s education sector.

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