Exchange on GPE engagement at country level

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1 Exchange on GPE engagement at country level Background The GPE Board meeting in Oslo on June and the presence of GPE Secretariat colleagues in Oslo will be a good opportunity for the GPE Secretariat, NORAD, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Civil Society Partners and INGOs to discuss how the Partnership works at country level. This note provides a concept and framework for such a meeting. Objectives Build a common understanding around how to engage effectively at country level to achieve the Global Partnership s strategic goals and objectives, adding value to SDG 4 implementation and recognizing the need to leverage the full Partnership to attain these. Derive lessons learned from specific country level processes, which will be integrated in the Secretariat s work to compile good practices and areas for improvement on effective, inclusive LEG collaboration. Methodology 1. Country focus The workshop will focus on 3 GPE countries of high interest to Norway: South Sudan, Nepal and Malawi. In addition to being priority partner countries for Norway, these countries have been selected because of recent experiences with GPE processes, either with the new funding model or through the operational framework for effective engagement in fragile and country affected countries. A suggested focus for the discussion has been provided, but partners may choose to go beyond these more recent processes if they have been part of previous GPE processes in these countries. Malawi: recently completed a funding application using the new funding model; the context is one of significant challenges, including capacity constraints in the Ministry of Education combined with the financial constraints resulting from Cashgate. Focus for discussion: Process around Education Sector Plan Appraisal, Endorsement and process to apply for an Education Sector Program Development Grant; Local Education Group (LEG) effectiveness including Civil Society Education Fund link to policy process (if relevant)

2 Nepal: among the first countries to apply for GPE funding using the new funding model; the country has relatively high capacity and strong coordination mechanisms. Focus for discussion: Process around application and implementation of Education Sector Plan Development Grant variable part discussion contribution to sector dialogue; LEG effectiveness, Civil Society s monitoring role and Civil Society Education Fund link to policy process (if relevant). South Sudan: Fragile context; GPE s ability to respond to changing needs in conflict and crisis situations has been put into practice; role of GPE in supporting sector planning and coordination. Focus for discussion: Process around grant implementation and responding to a changing situation, including recent revision of the grant. 2. Key questions To compile information in advance and enrich the dialogue with perspectives from country level, invited partners will convey the questions listed below to their field staff in these countries. Partners do not need to address all the issues listed, but should rather go in depth on those of greatest value and/or interest in the country: 1. What are some ways in which the GPE (as a Partnership and with Secretariat support) has contributed to the following (as they apply): a. Technical support or guidance to Sector Analysis/Sector Planning b. Strengthened/more inclusive policy dialogue c. Harmonization and sector coordination through the Local Education Group d. Dialogue and analysis on equity e. Dialogue and analysis on learning outcomes f. Dialogue and analysis on efficiency g. Add value to the sector through program investment h. Accountability and transparency in education budget processes i. Dialogue and analysis on inclusion of marginalized groups) j. Strengthening national data and statistics (for SDG 4 implementation) k. Other areas (specify) 2. What were some enabling/helpful factors? 3. What constraints or problems were experienced? 4. What key lessons can be drawn from this process? How can these be documented and disseminated? Partners will be invited to prepare key points for each question as relevant, as inputs to the discussion. A 1-2 page note on issues they would like to focus the discussion on will be submitted to the workshop organizers before the workshop. These will be consolidated into a discussion guide for each country case.

3 Workshop Structure The GPE Secretariat will present a summary overview of the GPE Country Operating Model. A summary will be provided in advance so most of the session can focus on the country case studies. Three discussion sessions will follow, one around each country: 1. Brief overview of the GPE-related process in the given country by the Secretariat (list and dates of key elements of the process, such as date of appraisal and endorsement, steps of application process these will also be communicated in individual preparatory notes for each country). 2. For each country, a panel of partners (3-4 as available) will present key outcomes of the preparatory fact-finding work in the form of (1) what worked well, (2) constraints/issues, and (3) lessons learned. Each panelist will be given 5 minutes to present. Once each panel has presented, a broader discussion on the Global Partnership s added value, issues and lessons learned will be facilitated

4 RBF: Paradigm shift, or latest fashion? An interactive Talk Show about RBF in Education Executive Summary In this Talk Show style event RBF experts and practitioners will be debating the benefits and possibilities, as well as the limitations and concerns related to Results Based Financing (RBF) in Education. The show is hosted by a global RBF expert who will lead an engaging conversation by a diverse group of guests about what RBF can and cannot achieve. By the end of the session, the audience will have a good understanding of how RBF can strengthen education systems and about the use of RBF interventions i.e. performance-based school grants and teacher incentives. They will also learn of the RBF risks and how they can be mitigated. Audience members will have a chance to share their opinions, comment and ask questions throughout the session using an interactive online tool. Background Education is one of the surest means to end poverty, but much of this potential is lost if students do not acquire skills in school that they need to succeed in life. Achieving learning for all will require moving beyond simply financing the inputs that education systems need, to strengthening these systems to deliver results. This, in turn, implies aligning governance, financing rules, incentives, and management practices with the ultimate goal of better learning outcomes, especially for children from the world s poorest families for whom access to quality education remains deeply inequitable. There is growing demand from countries for RBF, which is a promising set of tools to help achieve this critical alignment within education systems. But there are also many questions that remain to be answered and addressed if RBF is to be effectively and productively used in education. Format The session follows a talk show format to explore the guests experiences and perspectives on RBF in an entertaining way. Among other engagement methods, an interactive online audience participation tool will be used to poll the audience on their views on specific RBF elements, and the talk show guests will then be asked to interpret the results, referring to their own experiences. The guests will also be commenting on each other s responses, engaging into an exchange of knowledge and ideas. To ensure the interactive nature of the session, various features of the online tool will be used to allow the audience to ask questions from the guests and to express their opinions using their mobile devices.

5 Guests The guests represent a wide variety of actors working on RBF from NGOs and practitioners to researchers and program designers. Host: Karen Mundy, Chief Technical Officer and Director of Strategy Policy and Performance, Global Partnership for Education Guests: Piet Vroeg, Director Education & Economic Opportunities, Cordaid Isaac Mbiti, Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Economics in the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at the University of Virginia Keith Lewin, Professor of International education and Development at the University of Sussex and Director of the Consortium for Research on Educational Access, Transitions and Equity (CREATE) Petronella Vergeer, Senior Health Specialist, The World Bank Peter Holland, Senior Education Specialist and Program Manager, REACH, The World Bank

6 How to reach the most vulnerable children with a focus on disability Whilst massive progress has been made in increasing access to schooling across the world, 59 million children still have no access to basic education. These out of school children are defined by a range of characteristics, many of them overlapping. They may be children living in conflict affect areas, be from ethnic or language minorities, have a disability or live in extreme poverty. Reaching these last children is not an easy task and will require targeted and committed action by developing countries, donors and civil society alike. One key challenge to securing greater inclusion for these groups is a lack of a data, which often determines resource allocations made by governments. With weak information on these groups, limited financial and human resources follow. As such, these groups are requently overlooked, which in turn, reinforces their marginalization and the chances that they will never attend school. Improving tools and mechanisms to effectively identify vulnerable groups will be essential in order to both facilitate their access to school, but also to ensure that school systems are adequately inclusive. This session will thus take a dual approach to the issue of reaching the most vulnerable, with a focus on disability. The first half of the session will focus on data issues and methodologies for identifying the most vulnerable children. There is a range of promising work being done by actors including the Washington Group, Unicef and UNESCO Institute of Statistics on developing practical tools for gathering disaggregated data on vulnerable groups, and particularly on disabled children. The first half of the session will seek to present some of this work and how it can be utilized in practice by developing countries. This will provide a useful backdrop before delving into more practical aspects of inclusion, and different policies and initiatives that can be adopted by countries to secure access to ensure quality education for all students. The second half of the session will include panelists who provide a number of perspectives from government, policy experts and a disabled person s organization (DPO) on how to work on inclusion in practice. The session will be presented in a panel format, with each panelist making a short presentation before opening up for greater discussion.

7 Investing in Teachers for Formative Assessment The push for more systems level data for donors and international institutions has taken center stage in the lead up to the development of Education Examples such as GPEs new funding model, the World Bank s SABER, the LMTF and the new Global Alliance for Measuring Learning Outcomes are all examples. However, they are also examples of largely summative assessment snapshots that gather information for policymakers far removed from the realities of classrooms. One of the challenges of a global agenda in education is the fact that it needs to be monitored at the global level too. This in turn conjures the idea of data dashboards with switches and dials to increase learning outcomes by measuring them and tweaking relative levels of general policy prescriptions. Collecting data and assessing learning is a central part of education, but quality in education can not be reduced to conditions that can be easily quantified at a global level. Nor is measurement in itself a solution to the lack of learning that has been reported the last years. In fact, on the policy agenda for improving quality in education, very little is being done to systematically invest where the greatest benefit can occur - developing the formative assessment capacities of teachers, giving teachers the opportunity to use information regarding students learning to inform instructional decisions and teaching strategies, and to provide a basis for adaptive education. Research shows us that the benefits of assessment are greatest if the purpose of the assessment becomes less about the numbers and more about discerning where students are in their learning, and then planning lessons accordingly. Formative assessment is one of the most powerful tools to improve learning and teaching, and also invites to a positive ongoing relationship and conversation between teachers and their students. This session will seek to interrogate what authentic and meaningful formative assessment, that informs teaching and learning, looks like. What can be done to achieve more inclusion, improved quality and greater equity at classroom level? The session will also present some potential guidelines for integrating formative assessment across teachers professional learning and development continuum where good education originates. Panelists from GPE, academia, Education International as well as a few national teacher leaders will lead a discussion to look at promising approaches to support and strengthen formative assessment at scale and the needed changes in discourse to move towards a whole child and whole systems approach to improving teaching and learning, and providing more sustainability to our education systems.

8 A Joint Approach to Providing Quality Learning Materials Background A Global Book Fund concept is being developed by a range of partners as a direct response to the global learning crisis and the implementation of SDG 4. The 2013/14 UNESCO Global Monitoring Report documented that 250 million children were not learning basic skills in reading and mathematics, 120 million of whom were enrolled in school. Appropriate, good quality books at the right levels, in the right language and which are used well by teachers to plan learning and in individual lessons alongside effective assessment practices to inform future learning and track good progress are indispensable for all teaching and particularly for the teaching of reading,-a basic skill necessary for learning in all subjects. As summarized in a publication from The World Bank (2004): When it comes to specific factors related to education outcomes, the most striking area of agreement found in studies using a variety of research methodologies is that textbooks and learning materials show the highest incidence of impact for improving primary school outcomes in many developing countries. Multiple studies have proven the direct and positive relationship between the provision of reading materials and quantifiable progress in learning and development (see White, 2004; Michaelowa and Wechtler, 2012 for examples). Despite evidence showing the important links between books and learning outcomes, and despite numerous institutional efforts to increase book availability, extreme scarcity of books and other learning materials persists. Challenges exist in title development, title access, procurement and financing and supply chain management. As well as increasing the supply of the right learning materials to the right teachers, children and parents, critical issues relating to the demand for learning materials and their use in schools are necessary to address if progress in learning outcome is to be achieved. The Global Book Fund will address this critical and persistent gap in the availability of books and other learning materials. The Fund builds on the extensive experience in commodity reforms in other sectors and will transform how books are developed, procured, and distributed, improving learning outcomes and increasing the value for money of development aid. As well as the supply side and delivery chain constraints, the GBF is also identifying and seeking to address low demand for, and use, of books and learning materials in schools and at home.the GBF also represents a real opportunity to produce appropriate materials for underserved languages and special needs settings, such as the needs of children with disabilities and children in conflict zones.

9 Objectives of side event The session will provide an overview of the extensive feasibility and design planning that has informed the Global Book Fund activities to date. The session will provide concrete information so that audience members can: Understand the goals and workstreams of the Global Book Fund and links to improving learning outcomes worldwide; Use Global Book Fund technical resources and support to strengthen title development, title access, procurement and supply chain management to increase learning and value for money in the countries they support; and Access Global Book Fund financial resources to implement country level activities for the above Format of the Session Moderator: Karen Mundy, Chief Technical Officer and Director of Strategy Policy and Performance, Global Partnership for Education Presentation of the main findings from the feasibility study: Giving the outline of major findings, presented by Shubha Jayaram from Results for Development. Panel discussion: Four speakers (Jo Bourne, UNICEF, Joseph o Reilly, Save the Children, Teacher representative Education International (TBC) and Charles North, USAID, TBC)) will serve as panelists, each of whom will discuss a particular aspect of the Global Book Fund and its design and the design and early implementation phases. After making introductory remarks, they will be interviewed by the moderator and answer questions that the panelists would like to address in greater detail. Break out discussions: Providing for high-quality discussion and input, especially given the extent of experienced professionals in the audience, the audience will be asked to organize into approximate groups of 10, preferably around 4 tables. Each group will be facilitated by one of the panelists or the moderator. The break out groups will be led by their facilitator to discuss a list of questions that may be anticipated in advance, as well as specific additional questions and issues they have identified during the panel discussion. Q&A: To ensure that the full professional experience of the audience is tapped, group facilitators (panelists) will report out to the whole audience on the top three observations and issues that have arisen in their group during the break out session. Input will be gathered in a final report and be used in continued development of Fund operations.

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