Publication: When Governments Get Creative : Adult Literacy in Senegal
Nordtveit, Bjorn Harald
This report summarizes lessons learned and key policy findings on the World Bank's work in education in Senegal. In 1993, Senegal established a new policy for literacy programs based on partnership between civil society and the state: the state ensures policy leadership, overall coordination, monitoring and evaluation; the providers (civil society organizations, such as non-profits, village associations, and language associations) implement local literacy activities; an independent contract-managing agency handles contracts and rapid transfer of funds to providers. The World Bank financed project achieved the following results, which were similar to those achieved by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA): about 190,000 participants, of which 87 percent were women, enrolled in literacy classes over a five-year period; capacity in government and civil society organizations improved consistently; the dropout rate averaged 15 percent (much lower than for most adult literacy programs); most participants achieved learning mastery levels for reading (although not for math). The results of the literacy training exceeded target levels. Learning outcomes systematically improved as a result of two factors: providers became more experienced; and research led to improved procedures. The report notes that weak monitoring and evaluation contributed to the following shortcomings: re-financing of low-quality providers; lack of information about impact. As a result of these problems, some of the literacy courses did not provide adequate learning for the participants.
“Nordtveit, Bjorn Harald. 2004. When Governments Get Creative : Adult Literacy in Senegal. Education notes. © World Bank, Washington, DC. http://openknowledge.worldbank.org/entities/publication/6e1bd93a-4c5d-5322-981e-879c274b8ac1 License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.”