Education Notes

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Education Notes is a series produced by the World Bank to share lessons learned from innovative approaches to improving education practice and policy around the globe. Background work for this piece was done in partnership, with support from the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID).

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Now showing 1 - 6 of 6
  • Publication
    Education Finance : It's How, Not Simply How Much, That Counts
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-02) Vegas, Emiliana; Coffin, Chelsea
    The precise relationship between spending and learning outcomes in education is unknown, which leads some researchers and policy makers to question whether the amount of spending in education matters at all (Hanushek 1986). Among countries with similar levels of income, those that spend more on education do not necessarily score higher on international assessments such as the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA). Even within an education system, student achievement varies among localities that spend comparable amounts (Wag staff and Wang 2011). The observation that learning outcomes are seemingly unrelated to spending levels supports the argument that how money is spent, not simply how much, matters in education finance. Education spending represents the point at which monetary resources begin to promote learning outcomes. National, subnational, and local governments; the private sector; and sometimes even international actors may spend money on public education. Fiscal control mechanisms are crucial for understanding education finance systems; they are used to plan, monitor, and execute a country's education budget. If resources are not used for their intended purpose, it is unlikely that education services will be of adequate quality.
  • Publication
    Fast Track Initiative : Building a Global Compact for Education
    (Washington, DC, 2005-09) World Bank
    The Education for All -- Fast Track Initiative (FTI) was launched in 2002 as a partnership between donor and developing countries to accelerate progress towards the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of universal primary education. FTI is built on mutual commitments: 1) partner countries have agreed to give priority to primary education and to develop sound national education plans, and 2) donors have agreed to increase support in a transparent, coordinated manner. This paper includes the following headings: the Education for All -- Fast Track Initiative (FTI); FTI promotes education policy reform; FTI promotes aid effectiveness; monitoring and evaluation; FTI trust funds; and expansion of FTI.
  • Publication
    EFA and Beyond : Service Provision and Quality Assurance in China
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2005-07) Wang, Yidan
    China is not often thought of in the Education-for-all (EFA) context but its education sector over the past 20 years provides many lessons for countries that are approaching Universal Primary Education (UPE). The most important lesson may be that the need for educational reform does not diminish as countries approach UPE. The first challenge is to expand education opportunities. As coverage expands, however, new challenges inevitably emerge that require constant attention and frequent updates to education policy and financing mechanisms.
  • Publication
    School Fees : A Roadblock to Education For All
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2004-08) Bentaouet Kattan, Raja; Burnett, Nicholas
    There is increasing momentum on the road to Education for All (EFA), but school fees are still a roadblock for too many children. Several African countries have recently abolished school fees outright. The dramatic surge in enrollments that followed, is strong evidence that the payment of fees can be a major obstacle to enrollment. The note examines the prevalence of fees, and their impact worldwide, and draws lessons involved in attempts to eliminate user fees, and to provide alternate sources of financing. Some important lessons are being learned from these efforts, namely, that fees cannot be abolished without consideration of whether, and how, they should be replaced by an alternative source of income. Replacement revenues can be provided by simply increasing expenditures on education, by improving the efficiency of education spending, or by use of debt relief funds to close the financing gap.
  • Publication
    Achieving Education for All in Post-Conflict Cambodia
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2002-07) Thomas, Christopher J.
    Cambodia has made good progress in rebuilding its education system after three decades of conflict and isolation. Enrollments are growing, administration is improving, and large numbers of schools have been rehabilitated. A number of innovative and mutually reinforcing programs have energized local administrators and resourced schools, building on early efforts to rebuild capacity. These are, however, not sufficient conditions for improving education outcomes, and significant challenges remain in the financing and management of education in order to realize Cambodia's goal of providing free, universal access to basic education.
  • Publication
    Achieving Universal Primary Education in Uganda : The ‘Big Bang’ Approach
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2002-04) Bertoncino, Carla; Murphy, Paud; Wang, Lianqin
    Uganda's primary enrollment rates have risen remarkably since 1996, when the Government eliminated fees in a bold attempt to achieve universal primary education. But the massive expansion in numbers has affected the quality of education; and it will be a major challenge to cope with the rising demand for post-primary education. Key lessons learned include: Successful education reform in developing countries like Uganda require high levels of political and education management commitment that is sustained over a long period. The big bang approach can be a very powerful policy instrument for getting all the children into school and Uganda had managed to do this very well. Timely, flexible donor support is a critical factor.