Supporting literacy in West Africa

Despite rising school enrolment rates in Burkina Faso, Niger and Senegal, research into primary school reading literacy have revealed poor results. With the aim of addressing this, UNESCO’s International Bureau of Education (IBE) launched the project ‘The results of learning to read in the first years of primary school: integration of the curriculum, teaching, learning aids and assessment’ in November 2013. ECOPER has recently presented its evaluation report of the project. The evaluation applied a mixed methodology, taking in surveys, interviews and focus groups with project stakeholders, and field missions to the three beneficiary countries.

The project was funded by the Global Partnership of Education (GPE) and implemented in two phases. There was first a national and international diagnostic study conducted in collaboration with the University of Geneva. The second phase involved the modification of curricula and the capacity building of education professionals, including teacher training, with the ultimate goal of improving the way that reading is taught.