Lessons and learnings from Asia Pacific: Insights from the third webinar on teacher-led learning circles for formative assessment

published 28 February 2024 updated 2 May 2024

On 27 February 2024, the third webinar of the Teacher-led Learning Circles for Formative Assessment (T3LFA) series took place to share key lessons and learnings from implementation. Called ‘Teacher-led Learning Circles for Formative Assessment: Lessons and Learnings from Asia Pacific,’ the focus of this webinar was to provide a platform for project participants from South Korea and Malaysia to share learning experiences, the challenges and opportunities faced in enabling formative assessment, and chart the way forward for teachers and their unions in promoting further engagement and networks built around the project.

The Asia Pacific Cross Regional Learning Event in Seoul in 2023 made it evident that there was a shared motivation to become agents of change for formative assessment. The Learning Event inspired teachers like Julia to take up new formative assessment practices that transformed learning, where adopting the check for understanding (CFU) method of formative assessment shared by her South Korean peers enabled students’ comprehension of different topics to be coded, fostering real-time feedback and improvement. Facilitator Rosmawati highlighted the importance of this practice, stating that formative assessment does not just allow teachers to evaluate students' understanding, but also empowers students to take ownership of their learning. So much so that in some cases teachers have reported that students' attendance and motivation have dramatically improved.

The Learning Event in Seoul emphasised the importance of collaboration and the creation of professional learning communities to share promising formative assessment practices. Facilitator Minhui stated that in South Korea, since learning circles are already established and supported by the Office of Education, T3LFA teachers will now use these spaces to share their projects with colleagues. Teacher Sangwoo also outlined how outside of this, he will use his T3LFA experience during a sabbatical position in a regional Office of Education, drawing on his knowledge to inform the support provided to peers on growth-oriented assessment.

The diversity of approaches to sharing lessons and learnings among teachers in Malaysia and South Korea shows that teacher autonomy should be at the centre of all PLD and work on formative assessment. No institutional mandate should jeopardise this. Instead, institutional mandates should ensure that governments use the maximum available resources to facilitate PLD for formative assessment to build inclusive quality public education systems.

By promoting formative assessment and teacher professionalism, the T3LFA project helps to destress systems worldwide and puts teachers back in control. Everything must therefore be done to enable system-wide access to this empowering form of PLD.

Interested in keeping up to date and finding out more about the progress of the T3LFA project in our seven project countries? Watch our webinars, listen to our podcasts and follow our project page.