Our Profile

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About INSPIRASI Foundation

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What is INSPIRASI Foundation?


INSPIRASI (Inisiatif Kepemimpinan Pendidikan Untuk Raih Prestasi/Educational Leadership Initiative to Accomplish Achievement) is a nonprofit and independent organization aiming to improve the quality of student learning by supporting the improvement of the effectiveness of school principal leadership, specifically related to learning.

INSPIRASI Foundation is registered as a foundation pursuant to Decree of the Minister of Law and Human Rights of the Republic of Indonesia number AHU-0007137.AH.01.04 year 2019, with an operating license as a Course and Training Organization for Non-Formal Education Unit.

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Why does INSPIRASI Foundation focus on the School/Madrasah (Islamic School) Principal issue?

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INSPIRASI Foundation believes that effective school comes from effective school leadership. The father of Indonesian National Education, Ki Hajar Dewantara, has emphasized the important role of school leaders. This is expressed in three slogans, which are also used as the principle of Indonesian education.

First, school leaders act as role models with their attitudes and behaviors , or Ing Ngarsa Sung Tuladha. Second, school leaders raise the spirit of confidence of the teachers for them to carry out the task well and independently, or known as Ing Madya Mangun Karsa. Third, school leaders encourage & motivate their teachers to always teach effectively, called Tut Wuri Handayani.

There are several studies supporting the important role of school leadership in achieving good learning outcomes. World Development Report by the World Bank in 2018 states that schools that are able to achieve high learning outcomes are reflected from the principal who is actively involved in encouraging his/her teachers to develop their teaching competencies as well.

Effective school leaders will participate in overcoming challenges and determining the main goals with teachers related to students’ learning. It is in line with the publication of McKinsey (2010) which concluded that countries with high performance in international tests are those having best practices on school leadership.

A study by Bloom (2015) of 1,800 schools in several developed and developing countries shows that schools with good management and leadership practices are positively correlated with student learning outcomes[1]. Meanwhile, study of 1,000 schools in India, the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, and Sweden shows that an increase in 1 point in management scores is correlated with an increase in 10 points in student learning outcomes.

[1] Bloom, Nicholas, Renata Lemos, Raffaella Sadun, and John Van Reenen. 2015. “Does Management Matter in Schools?” Economic Journal 125 (584): 647–74.

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What is the focus of INSPIRASI Foundation’s activities in Indonesia on the issue of school principals?

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We believe that increasing school leadership competency must be a top priority for all countries, including Indonesia. Although Indonesia has reached almost 100% rate of enrollment in primary and secondary level, 80% at the high school/vocational school, and allocate 20% of the state budget every year for education, student learning outcomes have not met the expectations.

In fact, one of the results of the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) score showed that  28% of students in Indonesia attained Level 2 or higher in mathematics (OECD average: 76%).[1]. The program examines the abilities and knowledge of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics, and science.

Meanwhile, the results of the 2013 Education Sector Analytical and Capacity Development Partnership (ACDP) research revealed that Indonesian school principals needed support that focused on aspects of instructional leadership (academic supervision). Academic supervision is considered as the main competency that most influences student learning outcomes. The competency mapping study was conducted on 5,000 school principals in 55 regencies/cities across seven major islands of Indonesia.

To that end, specifically, INSPIRASI will implement a program that supports instructional leadership practices by school/madrasah principals in Indonesia. This is also in line with research by Robinson (2008) and John Hattie (2009), which shows that the competency aspect of “instructional leadership” (focusing on support for teacher and student learning interactions) has an impact on improving student learning outcomes.

In addition to implementing the program for school principals, we also work with the government, private sectors, and research institutions to create a supportive ecosystem for school/madrasah principals. Such objectives will also be achieved through technical assistance of policy makers, campaigns and public discussions, and others.

[1] PISA 2015, OECD

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Since when did INSPIRASI Foundation run its program?


We started the program in Indonesia in 2019. The activity was carried out through leadership program, involving 25 school principals and 25 fellow teachers in Kabupaten Karawang, West Barat.

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How did INSPIRASI Foundation initiative first emerge?


The emergence of INSPIRASI Foundation is an example of the successful collaboration of several stakeholders such as scholars/research, philanthropy, private sectors, international NGOs, and the government in an educational initiative.

The idea of INSPIRASI Foundation began with research on Productive Livelihood Catalysis: a Guide to Educational Interventions through the Acceleration Path for Large Scale and Maximum Impact prepared by the Asia Philanthropy Circle (APC) in 2017. The results of the research prove that leadership and school governance is one of the issues that schools must prioritize as a catalyst for the advancement of Indonesian education [1].

The research recommendations state that an initiative “Indonesia Principal Academy” is necessary for school principals. The activity can adopt a forum and field approach in schools, such as those that have been successfully carried out by Global School Leaders in India, Malaysia and Kenya.

[1] https://www.edumap-indonesia.asiaphilanthropycircle.org

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In its development, each stakeholder contributes significantly according to their role and capacity:

  • The APC study recommendations were followed up by the Tanoto Foundation, later on partnered with Triputra Agro Persada, PT Bukit Muria Jaya, and Resinda Hotel Karawang to start an initiative called INSPIRASI Foundation.
  • Global School Leaders, as a network of NGOs experienced in implementing similar programs in several countries, contributes in providing technical support and best practiceas a benchmark program in Indonesia.
  • SMERU Research Institute collaborates with INSPIRASI Foundation in program monitoring and evaluation.
  • Regional Government, the Ministry of Education and Culture, and the Ministry of Religion of the Republic of Indonesia play a central role in ensuring the alignment of the program with public policies in the scaling upprogram plan.

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