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Child Friendly Schools

In 2012, CAD began a partnership with an Australian NGO, Classroom of Hope, and Navitas Australia to implement Child Friendly Schools (CFS) in Ek Phnom District. A three year project began in 2013 to introduce the Schools for Excellence model across seven primary schools (Grades 1 to 6) and supported 1,762 children. The program was so successful that, in 2016, a second program was rolled out to meet the needs of another 1,785 children in five more schools. By 2019, the five new schools had increased their enrolment to 2321 and reduced their dropout rate to 3% (down from 20% at the start of the project). These improvements were a direct result of strengthening school administration and active enrolment campaigns.

Activities in this program include:

  • Creating maps of the school catchment areas; showing the location of homes of children who should be attending primary school.
  • Supporting over 400 scholarship students with materials, remedial and life skills classes. This also includes visits at school and home.
  • Recruiting and training Community Teachers to work in schools where there are teacher shortages.
  • Establishing Child-To-Child networks; where older children are encouraged to mentor younger students.
  • Form the student council and make them active
  • Carrying out infrastructure improvements; including providing clean water and sanitation, classroom enhancement, bio-gardens and playgrounds.
  • Recruiting and training community members to join School Support committees and mentoring SSCs to work with School Directors to improve conditions.
  • Working with District Office of Education staff to conduct monitoring visits to schools.
  • Working with Provincial Office of Education staff to facilitate workshop and or training.

In 2019, Navitas provided another round of funding for the following activities:

  • Construct 4 new classrooms at Andoung Trach school in Year 1 (completed and opened in December 2019).
  • Construct 4 new classrooms at Toul Lveang school in 2020.
  • Construct 2 new classrooms at Preak Drob school in 2021.
  • Provide 90 scholarships to students each year.
  • Provide a total of 60 bicycles to poor children who live a long way from school.

Reduction of Student Drop out Rates / School Improvements

Measure Before project Sept 19
Drop outs 20% 3%
Overall Child Friendly School rating (teaching, leadership, health etc). 34% 84%
Student teacher ratio 61:1 37:1
Number of children at schools 1785 2321

Below is a snapshot of work carried out by Classroom of Hope and CAD.  If you are inspired, and want to donate to the Classroom of Hope program, click here.

In 2012, the CAD Supplementary Class in Peas community was held in a community shed.

In 2013, the government opened a new primary school as a result of intensive lobbying from CAD Executive Director.

As a result of the CFS project, this government primary school now has flowers, vegetable patch, playground, clean water and toilets.

The vegetable patch is underway.

CAD staff prepare the school uniforms for scholarship students

This scholarship student is happy to be wearing her new uniform.


For more examples of Child Friendly School results, see our Programs and Success Stories or Classroom of Hope