Expressions of Interest

Independent Consultant to conduct an External Evaluation of MMI’s Tetum Literacy and Teacher Training Program




Mary MacKillop International (MMI) is the international aid and development agency of the Sisters of St Joseph. Initially mandated to improve the quality of literacy education in the Tetum language, MMI’s focus has since expanded to promoting life-long learning through teacher training, parent workshops, health education, music education and volunteer teacher support.

MMI has been designing and delivering pre-school and primary Tetum literacy education and teacher training since 1994 when the Bishop of Dili requested the Sisters of St Joseph to develop a program in Tetum literacy. MMI’s flagship program is the Mai Hatene Tetum program which contains over 130 culturally relevant primary and pre-primary story books in the Tetum language. MMI provides in-service training to teachers using this program. The training program is based on the national curriculum and is child-centred, age appropriate and activities based.


The core objective of the Tetum Literacy and Teacher Training program is to provide children with quality literacy education.  It achieves this objective through 3 core outputs: The provision of training workshops for pre-primary and primary school teachers; the development and distribution of age-appropriate literacy education resources; and the provision of ongoing mentorship of teachers through monitoring by MMI facilitators.

Purpose and scope of consultancy

The consultant’s scope of work will be to conduct an external evaluation on the Tetum Literacy and Teacher Training program. The consultant is asked to address the questions listed in the following three keys areas as part of their final report.


Teacher Training Workshops (including follow-up monitoring)

 The consultant will answer


  1. Are MMI’s literacy trainers delivering a high quality product in both the delivery of training and the follow up monitoring?
  2. Does the current model (trainers based in Dili) offer the best return on investment or are there other options (eg Field based staff)?


The Tetum Literacy and Teacher Training Program delivers training workshops for pre-primary and primary teachers in Dili and the districts throughout Timor-Leste. These 5-day training workshops provide teachers with a range of age appropriate learning activities that they can use in their own classrooms to enhance the learning experience of their students and provide a better quality of education. As part of this project, teachers also receive ongoing mentoring and support from MMI facilitators, who conduct follow-up visits after the training to monitor the progress of the teachers and review their delivery in the classroom.

Resource Development and Production

The consultant will answer


  1. What is the necessary number of book titles in the MMI Mai Hatene Tetun program? (eg which books are distributed, which are good quality)
  2. What are the ways in which book quality and distribution could be improved?


This project also involves the development and production of MMI’s literacy resources. These resources make up the Mai Hatene Tetun program which contains over 130 culturally relevant primary and pre-primary story books in the Tetum language, for each grade level. MMI distributes the books and supplementary learning materials to schools during the teacher trainings, with each teacher receiving a set of Tetum literacy books for children and a teachers’ manual.

Future Program Direction

The consultant will answer


  1. Is it necessary or even beneficial for MMI’s training courses to be accredited as part of a formal VTO Certificate (taking into consideration the programs aims and value for money)?



Key outputs


A final report addressing the 5 questions above including material gathered from staff, beneficiaries and other stakeholders and including recommendations for further action.


Please include at least 3 case studies.


The consultant will have access to at least one literacy training workshop, one follow up monitoring session, manuals for the program, resource books for the program, distribution lists and Timor-Leste and Australian based staff.



Management and Timeframe


The consultant will be managed by the Timor-Leste Program Coordinator based in Sydney, Australia and work closely with the Literacy Program Coordinator and M&E Officer based in Timor-Leste.


The consultancy will be undertaken in Timor-Leste with at least one field trip to a Literacy training and monitoring. MMI will manage all transport, accommodation and logistical travel arrangements including costs for this/these field visits.


The consultancy is expected to take place across a period of 15 days between December 2015 and January 2016. The dates of the consultancy will be set after final confirmation of training workshop dates which are currently planned for early December 2015.


An approximate timeframe is as follows:



Activity Days
Background reading 1
Orientation to the program and Data collection at Dili Office (distribution lists, books) 1
Field visit (To assess training and monitoring) 6
Beneficiary interviews/ focus groups 2
Interviews with Timor-Leste staff 2
Interviews with Australian based staff 2
Final report writing 1



Consultant Selection Criteria


The Consultant/s shall be expected to have the following skills and experience:

  • A Masters Degree or equivalent experience in education or international development;
  • At least three years experience in education
  • Knowledge of and experience working in Timor-Leste
  • Knowledge of the Timor-Leste education system
  • Previous experience in External Evaluations
  • High quality communication skills, including the ability to speak and write clearly and effectively, listen to and facilitate participation from others, including in cross-cultural contexts.
  • Understanding of MMIs vision, mission and values, and commitment to uphold the MMI Child Protection Code of Conduct.
  • Tetum language skills will be an advantage


Expressions of Interest


Expressions of interest should be submitted by 5pm Timor-Leste time on November 1st, 2015 via email to Emma Dawson –

All expressions of interest should include 3 items:

  1. Up to date CV with details of two relevant referees
  2. Statement of capability addressing the selection criteria (up to 2 pages).
  3. Cover letter outlining:
  • Quotation including daily rate (all field visit costs are covered by MMI)
  • Confirmation of availability to complete the evaluation within the specified time frame