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Group Submission Type: Panel Session
At the beginning of this decade, there were concerns about a non-strategic approach to development. The USAID Education Strategy for 2011-2015 addressed such concerns by purposely narrowing education programming to prioritize the following: reading skills of students in primary grades to increase school success and completion; employment opportunities for youth or strengthening higher education systems so youth can find quality jobs and contribute to the economic growth of their countries and; equitable access to education in crisis and conflict environments. These priorities were encapsulated into three Education Strategy Goals , which were then extended until 2017. With over five years since the release of the Education Strategy, the USAID’s Office of Education has commissioned a study of education project evaluations to take stock of what has been learned on topics of special interest.
This panel will review the body of evidence resulting from USAID-funded evaluations and discuss synthesis of findings and lessons learned related to:
1. Education quality, focusing on early grade reading. This discussion will address student learning outcomes as the primary focus of the projects. Interventions related to teacher training, classroom instruction, community engagement, and policy and system reforms will be examined.
2. Workforce development and higher education. This discussion will address responsiveness to labor market demands, entrepreneurship, access by marginalized groups, extension services offered by higher education, responsiveness to needs and dynamics in conflict-affected regions, and policy, systems and institutional capacity-building.
3. Education access, focusing on crisis and conflict environments. This discussion will address safe learning environments, equity, improved programming, strengthened institutional capacity building, violence prevention and countering violent extremism, and social and emotional learning.
4. Cross-cutting issues. This discussion will address gender, disability, innovative finance, information and communications technology (ICT), scaling and sustainability.
The synthesis of findings and lessons learned also broached the cross-cutting topics of gender, disability, innovative finance, uses of information and communication technology in education, and sustainability. This session will serve as an important opportunity for the team working on the synthesis of findings and lessons learned to present and gather feedback to their review. It should be noted that while the Education Strategy started in 2011, the Implementation Guidance took over a year to be finalized, and the most of the projects started after this, with many lasting until 2019 and beyond. Thus, findings and lessons learned related to this Education Strategy will continue to unfold in the coming years.
Synthesis of findings and lessons learned about early grade literacy programming - Jeff Davis, MSI
Synthesis of findings and lessons learned about workforce development and higher education programming - Clare Ignatowski, University of Pennsylvania
Synthesis of findings and lessons learned about access to education programming with a focus on crisis and conflict environments - Nitika Tolani, MSI
Synthesis of findings and lessons learned about cross-cutting issues - Marie-Louise Orsini, MSI