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  • Reply to: Digital School Census in 10 Weeks? How it was done in Sierra Leone   2 weeks 1 day ago

    This is excellent for so many reasons! (i) major kudos for successful implementation in such a short time frame (ii) thank you for breaking down the exact steps, it will help others (aka me) when we are trying to figure out digital data collection for our projects.

    Will you be publishing any other products with more details on this process in the future? And final question, could you elaborate on removing bloatware?

  • Reply to: Digital School Census in 10 Weeks? How it was done in Sierra Leone   2 weeks 2 days ago

    This is great and I applaud the amazing results obtained! I would just say that the cost seems on the conservative side. Just on tablets (without solar chargers, programming the surveys in ODK and piloting it), 400 tablets at $110 per unit is $44K. That leaves $150k for doing a full-scale education census? Maybe it is true and salaries and mobilization costs for a team of 600 enumerators across the whole country are really low, but I think that this should include all the "in-kind" costs (both on the WB and government side) so as to not set wrong expectations.

    From the post, I understand there was a whole technical team on the WB side who's salaries need to be taken into consideration. Flying and accommodations to set up the process and training people, the time of the civil servants and other various expenses are important costs too. There's usually the need of people behind to check and clean the data, as well as to set up reports (even if automatically generated). Not to mention 200 more tablets were loaned by DFID. By stating that the whole exercise cost only $200K, there is a risk that tomorrow country X goes to the WB and says "we have $150k and tablets, let's do a full-scale census as you did in SL". Maybe I am wrong, but I don't think that would be financially viable. Or is it?

  • Reply to: Digital School Census in 10 Weeks? How it was done in Sierra Leone   2 weeks 2 days ago

    This is amazing! Having adequate data is the beginning of any meaningful planning and implementation of interventions for improvement in any venture. The Sierra Leonian government should endeavour to update their education (school) data base built during this exercise at periodic intervals in order for it to remain relevant.

    Another phase of intervention towards improving education in Sierra Leone is to look closely at teacher adequacy for the schools. Further and continuing training of teachers should be implemented as a proirity area for driving the new education initiative. Teacher incentivisation should form part of this exercise. Teachers' promotion should be based on the progress made by individual teachers to upgrade his/her expertise via self-effort improvement (MOOC) and students' performance at monitored external national exams.

    Infrastructure and instructional materials for teaching-learning activities should follow. This will include empowering and tasking teachers and education administrators on developing indigenous insructional materials that help the student-learners to easily relate their theoretical iearning with their environment and he opportunities therein.

    Another area that requires prority attention is student-learner motivation. The student-learners should be made to appreciate the value in education and encouraged to embrace the new opportunities that the current revolution in education in Sierra Leone presents to them. Merit-based scholarships should be instituted on a continuing basis to ensure that student-learner efforts are rewarded and encouraged. This will serve as a complement to any universal education program that the government may be able to implement either in phases or outrightly as time goes on.

    It is also expected that this will be copied by other countries in the sub-Saharan African region and contextualised for the improvement of their educational systems.

  • Reply to: Teach: Tackling the learning crisis, one classroom at a time   2 weeks 6 days ago

    Agreed, about teachers needing to revolutionise the strategies they use,particularly in light of neuroscience studies.
    However what is missing is the participation of the students - they are not given the responsibility for their learning -expectations are low and they react accordingly. Look at Escuela Nueva and the total engagement of students within a student government. Teachers are partners not just directors of learning.

  • Reply to: A classroom for all: Africa’s vision to educate children with disabilities   3 weeks 3 days ago

    Very interesting blog.

    Good luck #Alejandra Gutierrez.