Philippines Remote Learning Study Report

In June 2020 the Philippines Department of Education (DepEd) adopted the Basic Education Learning Continuity Plan (BE-LCP), a framework to guide the 2020–2021 school year in light of school closures that started in March 2020, during the final weeks of the 2019–2020 school year. The plan introduced an adjusted and condensed curriculum, the Most Essential Learning Competencies, to support schools and teachers in delivering learning through alternative modalities in lieu of face to face classes. DepEd also modified the 2020–2021 school calendar to start October 5, 2020, and end in June 2021. The school year typically runs from June through March in the Philippines, but regions, divisions, and schools needed additional time to prepare and operationalize the BE-LCP. For example, regions were tasked with determining appropriate remote learning1 delivery modalities based on local context. Approaches were further adapted and defined at the individual school level as schools contextualized the learning continuity plan. Given DepEd’s decentralized approach to contextualizing and ensuring learning continuity for learners, it became clear that remote learning would look vastly different across regions, divisions, and within schools. Subsequently, this mixed-methods study was designed to take an in-depth look at schools and families across the country to understand their experiences with teaching and learning during school closures—and particularly to understand how early language and literacy learning can best be supported in the distance learning context.

PLAY overview CIES (Dubeck et al., 2022)

Play has the potential to transform the global learning crisis. In infancy and early childhood, play builds a strong foundation for later learning by improving brain development and growth (Goldstein, 2012). In education systems that lack capacity to support children effectively, play brings its own powerful engine to drive learning—the joyful, engaged intrinsic motivation of children themselves (Zosh et al., 2017). In this way, play contributes to the holistic development of children, helping to prepare them for the challenges of the current and future world. Accordingly, there is an urgent need to improve measurement of playful learning, to be able to add to the evidence base on what the benefits of play are, how playful learning takes place, and how it can be promoted at home and at school across the lifespan. This presentation focuses on a renewed conceptualization of playful learning and describes an innovative approach to measuring how settings contribute to playful learning for children ages 0 to 12, supported by the Lego Foundation. The settings we examine include homes, classrooms and ECD centers. Following Tseng and Seideman (2007), we view settings as consisting of social interactions (i.e. between teachers or caregivers and children) and the organization of resources (e.g. learning materials, games). First, we will present our conceptual framework which identifies six constructs to guide our measurement strategy. The constructs, such as ‘support for exploration’, represent the ways in which a setting supports playful learning. Next, we will present our contextualization framework which guides how we are adapting and modifying the measurement tools to different contexts. The tool consists of a protocol to observe adult-child interactions and survey measures conducted with teachers, caregivers and primary school pupils. As part of the development process for these measurement tools, observation and survey measures will go through a three-phase development process in Kenya, Ghana, Colombia, and Jordan. The Build phase involved collecting qualitative data from teachers, caregivers and students to understand their perception of playful learning and how it is supported at home and at school. Next, an Adapt phase took place where the initial versions of the measurement tools underwent cognitive interviewing, field adaptation, and a small pilot to adjust and extend the items in the tool. The third Test phase is a full pilot of the instruments, and the data will undergo rigorous psychometric analyses to review the validity and reliability of the tools in the four country contexts. We will use the results to adjust the instruments and to finalize the conceptual framework and contextualization strategies. The final toolkit will be publicly available towards the end of 2022 with supporting materials for contextualization, piloting, training and analysis. The toolkit will be available on a public platform designed to promote sharing of data collected using the tool and to collaborate to continually improve approaches to measuring support for playful learning.

Remote Learning in the Philippines During COVID [Briefs Series]

The Remote Learning Study was conducted during the 2020–2021 school year to investigate how mother-tongue-based multilingual education reading instruction proceeded in 20 schools around the country while classrooms were closed. The school head, 2 teachers, and 4 home learning partners from each school in Grades 1 and 3 were interviewed to gain insights on school administration, teaching and learning, and the home environment. Data was collected at three time points—November, March and June—from 20 school heads, 37 teachers of and 79 parents. Not all respondents were available at each time point. No parents were interviewed in November as recruitment was still underway. Children were also asked to fill out a literacy assessment worksheet, but very few parents returned this worksheet at each occasion. These briefs describe essential themes that emerged from this activity. #1 - Strategies for Assisting Home Learning Partners, #2 - Use of Teaching and Learning Materials, #3 - Use of Technology, #4 - Student Engagement Strategies, #5 - Challenges and Solutions to Remote Learning, #6 - School Leadership, #7 - Literacy Instructional Practice.

2019 Regional Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA): Bahasa Sug, Chavacano, Magindanawn, and Mëranaw

This study measured students’ reading ability and gathered basic demographic information from children and teachers. Some standard context information was also gathered from children about their exposure to reading in the home. Thus, the data allow us to describe one outcome of the current schools sampled—children’s reading ability—but they do not provide any empirical measurement of the inputs that contribute to this outcome. To explain the current state of reading performance as measured by this study, we must rely on other contextual data from our concurrent Language Usage Study and general knowledge of mother-tongue-based multilingual education (MTB-MLE) implementation, as documented by policy and other studies carried out by other researchers. In the absence of direct measurement of “implementation fidelity” to a particular reading instruction program or materials, we must also rely on global evidence of how reading skills develop in alphabetic languages. To put it simply, children can learn to read, but only if they are taught to read. Teachers can only teach reading if they have been prepared to do so through training and are equipped with appropriate materials. Teachers and students must be present and making productive use of class time. The purpose of using EGRA as a system diagnostic is primarily to establish a baseline against which future progress can be measured and to identify priority areas for instructional improvement and teacher training. Cite this report: Betts, K., Punjabi, M., Pouezevara, S. & Cummiskey, C. (2019). 2019 Regional Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA): Bahasa Sug, Chavacano, Magindanawn, and Mëranaw. Prepared for USAID under the All Children Reading-Philippines Project, AID-OAA-TO- 16-00017. Research Triangle Park, NC: RTI.

Evaluación de Lectura Inicial en El Salvador: Infome Final

La Agencia de los Estados Unidos para el Desarrollo Internacional (USAID) decidió financiar este estudio para proporcionar información actual al Ministerio de Educación (MINED) y al Gobierno El Salvador sobre el desempeño en lectura de los estudiantes de segundo y tercer grado a nivel nacional y, específicamente, en las escuelas ubicadas en los municipios del Plan El Salvador Seguro (PESS). PESS es un plan nacional para ayudar a 50 municipios cuyos índices de violencia y delincuencia son altos. La vinculación entre educación (tanto matricula como aprendizaje) y la violencia es una de las razones clave por la cual tanto el MINED como USAID quieren obtener más información sobre el estado de las habilidades lectoras en los grados iniciales. El MINED destacó su compromiso en mejorar la lectura cuando se inauguró el año escolar 2018 con una promesa de terminar con el analfabetismo. Para entender el desempeño en lectura de los grados iniciales, USAID solicitó a RTI que efectuara el presente estudio utilizando la Evaluación de Lectura Inicial (EGRA, por sus siglas en ingles), un instrumento adaptado y validado en más que 70 países. EGRA mide las habilidades básicas para poder leer con fluidez y con comprensión, que es el objetivo final de la lectura.

Vision and Hearing Screening Tools Pilot Activity in the Philippines

This report documents the outcomes of a study, implemented jointly by DepEd and RTI International, to pilot a set of electronic vision and hearing screening tools that have been successfully used elsewhere, including by teachers. These tools hold the promise for easy administration, even with limited training, and more reliable data, especially when screening for hearing impairments.

Vision and Hearing Screening Pilot Activity Brief

On June 21 and 22, 2018, selected teachers, assessors, and medical officers from the Philippines National Capital Region (NCR) and Region-IV A participated in a two-day training to learn how to use electronic vision and hearing screening tools. The trained screeners then piloted the tools from June 25 to July 4, 2018, in a total of eight schools in the country. The activity was a proof of concept initiative that examined the feasibility of using electronic disability screening tools in the local school context. It also investigated how teachers might be trained to serve as effective screeners for students in their classrooms.

Using Mobile Technology for Sensory Disability Screening: Field Experiences from the Philippines

This presentation was delivered in Manila, Philippines on October 15, 2018 at a dissemination event including DepEd, USAID, and other local stakeholders. The purpose of this presentation was to share approaches and lessons learned from the pilot activities that were conducted in June and July 2018 in the Philippines.

Effectiveness of Teachers’ Guides in the Global South: Scripting, Learning Outcomes, and Classroom Utilization

This report presents the results of RTI International Education’s study on teachers' guides across 13 countries and 19 projects. Using quantitative and qualitative methods, we examine how teachers’ guides across the projects differ and find substantial variation in the design and structure of the documents. We develop a scripting index so that the scripting levels of the guides can be compared across projects. The impact results of the programs that use teachers’ guides show significant impacts on learning outcomes, associated with approximately an additional half year of learning, showing that structured teachers’ guides contribute to improved learning outcomes. During observations, we find that teachers make a variety of changes in their classroom instruction from how the guides are written, showing that the utilization of structured teachers’ guides do not create robotic teachers unable to use their own professional skills to teach children. Unfortunately, many changes that teachers make reduce the amount of group work and interactivity that was described in the guides, suggesting that programs should encourage teachers to more heavily utilize the instructional routines designed in the guide. The report includes a set of research-based guidelines that material developers can use to develop teachers’ guides that will support effective instructional practices and help improve learning outcomes. The key takeaway from the report is that structured teachers' guides improve learning outcomes, but that overly scripted teachers' guides are somewhat less effective than simplified teachers' guides that give specific guidance to the teacher but are not written word for word for each lesson in the guide.

Lot Quality Assurance Sampling (LQAS) Pilot Activities in Amhara and Tigray, Ethiopia: Final Report

This report summarizes main findings and lessons learned from the piloting of the lot quality assurance sampling (LQAS) methodology in the education sector in Ethiopia. It also suggests next steps for applying the LQAS methodology more broadly for education program monitoring.