Schooling Ain’t Learning, and Learning Assessments (Alone) Ain’t Reform

A new report examining independent learning assessments in developing countries shows that while they produce robust measures to date they have done little to improve the quality of learning. Growing awareness of the sorry state of education is necessary, but it is far from sufficient to spark change.

How ordinary citizens transformed the education agenda

The ultimate measure of success in education is not whether or not children attend school, but whether they learn. And creating a system in which learning is valued requires finding out what children are learning and building broad awareness about it. It was these two principles that inspired the organization Pratham in India to mobilize and train volunteers to conduct household surveys of children’s learning.

Bangladesh completes pilot citizen-led assessment

The exam based assessment system is said to have been over emphasized in the recent years in Bangladesh that has inspired memorizing texts rather than learning the basics. In order to assess children’s basic learning competencies in reading (native language and English) and arithmetic, BRAC and IID jointly conducted a household based survey. Simple tests at the household level were conducted for the assessment.

Why are citizen led learning assessments not having an impact on home soil – and how can we change that?

Citizen-led learning assessments have been one of the most internationally influential educational initiatives of the decade. However, what of impact in their home countries? This blog is written on ASER India’s tenth birthday, prompting us to celebrate its success but also look to the future. ASER in India has been ground-breaking, inspiring participatory learning assessments across the globe:

Bringing Learning to Light: The Role of Citizen-led Assessments in Shifting the Education Agenda

The Hewlett Foundation supported Results for Development Institute in this evaluation of citizen-led assessments of learning. The Foundation’s Global Development and Population Program has funded citizen-led assessments as a central part of our Quality Education in Developing Countries Initiative and continues to do so as a way of measuring children’s basic reading and math abilities

Read India – When ‘scale’ met ‘system’

Pratham is one of India’s largest non-governmental organisations working in education. Annually since 2005, Pratham has been facilitating the ASER survey[1] that provides information on schooling and basic learning from all rural districts in India. Since inception ASER has been highlighting the poor levels of reading and arithmetic skills of children aged 5 to 16. To address this problem, in 2007 Pratham launched the Read India program to demonstrate what could be done to improve children’s basic learning on scale.