Investing in Education (News and Research 63)

Investing in Early Childhood Education for Cambodia’s Future Success

0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000cWhile the net enrollment rate in primary education increased to about 98% in 2015, nationwide enrollment rate for children 3-5 years old was just 41% in 2016. Through the Early Child Education (ECE) project, 100 formal schools and community-based preschools have opened to benefit more than 125,000 students aged 3-5 years old. Investing in young children through ECE projects is one of the smartest investments a country can make to address inequality, break the cycle of poverty, and improve outcomes later in life. Two years ago, 40-year-old preschool teacher Che Eang presented an ultimatum to her community: Either build a safer school for the 30 primary school children she teaches, or she quits…So far, the project is reaping results. For example: By June 2017, some 100 formal schools and 1,000 community-based new preschool facilities have opened. More than 47% of children between 3-5 years old are now enrolled in preschools, both in urban and rural districts. By May 2017, more than 125,000 students between 3-5 years old have directly benefited from the project. More than 3,800 community-based early child education teachers and mothers have been trained on health-care, school construction, and child-rearing skills.  The government hopes that this marks just the beginning of more progress for future generations. That is why H.E. Dr. Hang Chhuon Naron, the Minister of Education, Youth and Sport, continues to encourage parents to pay more care to the early years of child rearing, from pregnancy to the 3-year mark – regarded as the golden years for developing physical and mental health. Said Minister Naron, confident that early childhood education opens worlds of opportunities: “Parents should allow their children to attend preschools, which is the foundation for their success in pursuing primary, secondary and higher education.”

Indigenous Peoples, Poverty and the Search for Solutions  Recently, Canadian Prime Minister @JustinTrudeau ‏used his United Nations General Assembly speech to highlight the socioeconomic challenges faced by Indigenous Peoples in his country. He drew attention to inequalities in education, unemployment and the higher levels of poverty of indigenous peoples compared to the non-indigenous population…

Investing in School Readiness. Children in rural Indonesia can follow different pathways of early childhood education. Which of the pathways is most cost-effective? Nozomi Nakajima, Amer Hasan, Haeil Jung, Sally Brinkman, Menno Pradhan, and Angela Kinnell

China targets ‘world-class’ status for 42 universities

Promotion Incentives in the Public Sector: Evidence from Chinese Schools  We provide evidence that promotion incentives influence the effort of public employees by studying China’s system of promotions for teachers. Predictions from a tournament model of promotion are tested using retrospective panel data on primary and middle school teachers. Consistent with theory, high wage increases for promotion are associated with better performance, teachers increase effort in years leading up to promotion eligibility, and reduce effort if they are repeatedly passed over for promotion. Evaluation scores are positively associated with teacher time use and with student test scores, diminishing concerns that evaluations are manipulated…

Private Sector to Help Drive Indonesia’s Public Education Overhaul: F&E Group

The Importance of Information Targeting for School Choice  Although school choice programs are common, we know little about the underlying decision-making processes. In this study, we randomly assigned 900 junior high schools in Ghana, a country with universal secondary school choice, to 1 of 3 treatment arms: (1) information to students, (2) information to students and guardians, and (3) control group. We observe changes in beliefs, behaviors, and the decision maker’s identity through a survey of guardians. Our intervention increased the likelihood that guardians were involved with and informed about the school selection process. Moreover, specifically targeting guardians led to significantly larger changes for most outcomes

Dan Koretz’s the Testing Charade

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