Student Performance in Reading and Mathematics, Pedagogic Practice, and School Management in Doukkala Abda, Morocco

Assessments of student learning in the primary grades, such as the Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) and Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA), offer an opportunity to determine whether children are developing the fundamental skills upon which all other literacy and mathematical skills build, and, if not, where efforts might be best directed. To answer these questions about learning and the factors influencing it in Morocco, a study was carried out in a sample of schools in the Doukkala Abda region. The study investigated early grade reading and math skills and the learning environments that support them. It was completed as part of the Education Data for Decision Making (EdData II) project, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), in partnership with USAID/Morocco and with the national and regional (AREF Doukkala Abda) levels of Morocco’s Ministry of Education (MOE). Student assessment and school survey protocols developed under the EdData II project were tailored to the Moroccan context during an adaptation workshop with national and regional MOE staff. Reading and math assessments (EGRA/EGMA) were administered to a total of 773 grade 2 and grade 3 students randomly selected from within 40 schools. The 40 participating schools had been randomly selected from within the 1400 schools located in the Doukkala Abda region. In addition to student assessments, researchers interviewed Headteachers, teachers, students, and parents; conducted classroom and school inventories; and observed reading and math lessons. The fieldwork was carried out by MOE data collection teams under the supervision of RTI’s partner ETM in May 2011.