Strengthening institutional capacity to produce learning at scale: Case studies from Jordan, Malawi, Nepal, and Uganda

Case studies of RTI's work on strengthening institutional capacity in Nepal, Jordan, Malawi, and Uganda focusing on three core functions: (1) setting and communicating expectations; (2) monitoring against expectations; (3) providing targeted support to struggling schools.

Uganda LARA: Psychosocial Support training facilitators' guide

In March 2020, the government of Uganda closed all schools and other educational institutions to mitigate the wide spread of COVID-19. This exposed significant risk especially to rural areas where there is limited access to reading materials or virtual learning platforms to continue learning. Ministry of Education and Sports’ (MoES) Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19 (April 2020) outlined measures of continuing learning through radio, take home packages and digital learning. MoES also decided to provide psychosocial support to minimize the adverse effects of COVID-19 on pupils, teachers and the education system at large, through support from USAID/Uganda Literacy Achievement and Retention Activity (LARA).The project planned to support MoES to enhance capacity of Primary Teachers college tutors and administrators to cascade psychosocial support training to head teachers and teachers in 43 districts. The objective of the training was to i) equip participants with knowledge and skills on psychosocial support, ii) identify psychosocial needs and discuss appropriate interventions and iii) apply psychosocial support intervention skills. The Facilitator guide provides information which will help reduce COVID-19 related stress, anxiety and prepare teachers for school reopening. In addition, teachers will be able to protect and provide counselling to pupils.

Uganda LARA: Ministry of Education and Sports Literacy and Numeracy Advisory Committee Terms of Reference

The idea of the literacy and numeracy advisory committee started with “literacy” specifically, to offer advisory support on sustainability of EGR activities of Projects funded by USAID. During Basic Education Working Group meetings, members agreed to add numeracy, on the premise that developing children’s foundation skills of both literacy and numeracy is vital during the formative years. The purpose of the advisory committee is to ensure that organizational, systemic, and institutional capacity gaps and needs are identified and relevant organs receive guidance to act on measures to fill the gaps and ensure cost effective EGR/Numeracy activities are sustained. It is composed of senior and mid-level MoES official responsible for successful implementation of primary curriculum, with a specific focus on EGR and numeracy, drawn from BE and SE, DES, NCDC, TIET, SNE, Districts, Kyambogo University and development partners. The committee reports to the MoES PS and has authority to make recommendations for policy review and formulation of a new set of policy documents contributing to a new Sector Strategic Plan, including EGR and Numeracy. It also monitors programming, provides oversight and offers related guidance on interventions and strategies. The project supported MoES to develop a Terms of Reference to create a structure for the work of the Advisory Committee.