In the summer of 2006, the Office of International Programs at the University of Montana (UM), in collaboration with UM’s School of Education, administered a training program for Egyptian educators entitled the “Implementing and Managing a Decentralized Standards-Based Supervision and Appraisal System Program”. The project brought over fifty senior and middle level education supervisors from Egypt for a two-week training program which included observing and studying different models and practices of a decentralized standards-based supervision and appraisal system in the United States. The training program aimed towards providing the visiting educators with a variety of successful supervision and appraisal models in both theoretical and practical contexts during June and August of 2006. In addition to the educational component, the training program consisted of a variety of cultural activities designed to promote a deeper understanding and collaboration between the United States and Egypt.
In order to achieve these academic objectives, a variety of site visits were arranged in order to provide a practical observation of a decentralized standards-based supervision and appraisal system in progress. Each group met with representatives from the offices that have responsibilities at the state level. They met the Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI), including State Superintendent Linda McCulloch, and representatives from the Montana Education Association/ Montana Federation of Teachers (MEA/MFT). To elaborate how practices of a decentralized standards-based supervision and appraisal system vary based upon demographics, the Egyptian educators visited rural, mid-sized and large school districts. To ensure a theoretical understanding, lectures and group discussions were delivered in a classroom format. The training was funded through a grant awarded by the Academy for Educational Development which is under contract with USAID.