There is a growing evidence of correlation between the adequacy of school facilities and student behavior and performance. The condition of school infrastructure such as availability of electricity, better building, toilets and water and sanitation can affect student psychological state and has consequences for students performance and behavior, specifically attendance and drop-out rates (Branham, 2004). Research in other context has shown that student achievement lags in poor quality school buildings without basic facilities. Student behavior such as leaving early, absenteeism, suspensions and expulsions etc, is also considerably affected by the school quality and the availability of basic facilities. Enrollment is positively affected by increased spending on existing schools that makes them more attractive.
The provision of basic facilities to the government schools has been a prime concern for policy makers and is currently a major component of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Sector Programme (KESP). The Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (GoKP), during the past three years, has allocated and spent a significant portion of their budget towards the provision of basic amenities and facilities to schools at all levels in order to enhance academic outcomes by creating more conducive and better learning environments. The provision of basic facilities remains a core priority area as the failure to create and maintain optimum learning environments can significantly undermine efforts to reform education in KP. GoKP have sought to address this through the use of conditional grants for the provision of missing facilities. As such, they encourage Parent Teacher Councils (PTCs) to submit School Improvement Plans (SIPs) outlining their requirements and then make transfers to these PTCs after validating the data. PTCs then have responsibility to contracting the provision of the facilities.
The current government has spent the following funds in the preceding financial years
|Financial Year||Amount (Rs.)|
|2016-17 (Allocated)||6.4 Billion|
A study is required to examine the effectiveness of conditional grants and provision of facilities in terms of Value for Money. The study will also analyze the subsequent effect of the provision of basic facilities to schools on education outcomes and student behavior in the government schools of KP. The recommendations based on the study will provide direction for future improvements in the conditional grants budgetary allocation and implementation. The findings will also be useful for the design of future conditional grant projects to be carried out by the government.
Objectives of the Study
The basic objectives of the study are as follows:
- To determine value for money of conditional grant projects vs Annual Development Programme (ADP) projects along the principles of economy (cost-effectiveness of resources employed) and efficiency (optimal allocation of resources).
- To evaluate the effectiveness of the provision of facilities on education outcome indicators.
The first objective of the study is based on carrying out quantitative value for money analysis using DFID’s approach of ‘maximizing the impact of each pound spent to improve poor people’s lives’ (DFID approach to VFM, 2011). The main aim is to determine whether the resources and conditional grants have been used optimally to achieve the intended outcomes i.e. an optimum combination of cost and quality of facilities provided to the schools. This will allow us to determine whether the construction of new classrooms and provision of missing facilities through funds to PTCs provide better value for money compared to work carried out by the Communication and Works Department (C&W). The study will be carried out along the lines of analyzing:
Economy: Are the inputs (raw materials, labour, capital etc) acquired by the PTCs of appropriate quality at the right price? This will be compared with the traditional infrastructure and facilities procurement procedures followed by the C&W department.
Efficiency: Whether the inputs acquired are efficiently delivered into quality outputs in the form of provision of basic facilities and construction of new classrooms etc. The basic objective is to ascertain that the quantity and quality of infrastructure specified by the Government is being achieved with in the budget constraints efficiently and timely. Moreover, aspects of transparency and accountability in the acquisition of inputs and delivery of outputs will be analysed as well.
The second objective of the study is to evaluate the effectiveness of the provision of basic facilities on student education outcome indicators. The education outcome indicators will be evaluated using a combination of input and output indicators. The evaluation will concentrate on measuring the effect of the facilities on enrolment, absenteeism and retention.
However, as part of measuring the effectiveness of the provision of basic facilities on school quality, indicators such as the academic environment, teacher and student behavior regarding instructional and student engagement will be analyzed. To be included in the list, benefits have to occur at the school level and have a plausible relationship to student learning. It will be useful to understand the link through which changes in facilities affect the school environment. Therefore, Identifying the benefits of the facilities and their contribution to school’s overall effectiveness is an area the study aims to explore.
Economic analysis in determining the value for money of the allocation of resources is imperative to the design of the study. The analytical procedure required for judging the utility of social interventions used to make economic assessments has to be carefully designed to ensure VfM tools and practices are used effectively.
The conceptual framework will be outlined using core economy and efficiency indicators to determine the value for money of conditional grants mechanism under the administration of Parent Teacher Councils and C&W department. A fundamental understanding of VfM is essential to ensuring that the public interest is held paramount for all public-private endeavors. Therefore, to perform a credible analysis, a VfM expert will be required. The detailed methodological framework and research tools for assessment of conditional grants’ value for money will be developed by the M&E research team with technical assistance from a VfM expert.
To analyze the effect of the provision of school facilities on education outcome indicators, a combination of qualitative and quantitative methodological framework will be utilized. A questionnaire will be developed after an extensive review of literature in conjunction with discussion with Head Teachers and students regarding the provision of facilities and their benefits.
A representative sample of schools will be used that includes all primary, secondary and higher secondary which are functional and open to children. Primary data collection will include school-level measures of infrastructure facilities as well as various education outcomes and indicators which would be collected by field visits using a survey instrument. Secondary data will be collected using sources such as EMIS and IMU.
The randomly selected sample of government schools in the district will be surveyed for information on the provision of conditional grants and completion of additional classrooms and facilities e.g. Water and Sanitation, Toilets, Electricity and Boundary Wall. The effectiveness of the provision of basic facilities on school quality and academic environment will be assessed using the survey instrument based on interviews of the head teachers. However, quantitative education indicators such as enrollment figures, student attendance rate, teachers attendance rate, dropout and retention rate before and after the provision of facilities will be collected from EMIS and IMU to make before and after comparison of the impact of schools facilities on the education indicators.
The findings of the study will provide an assessment of the effectiveness of conditional grants on the provision of basic facilities to schools in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The analysis will be able to provide an overview of the conditional grants using empirical evidence. Moreover, the study will be able to provide tentative findings and recommendations based on the evaluation of the results.
KESP Resource Requirement:
STTA: Infrastructure specialist
The role of the infrastructure specialist is to provide engineering advisory support to the technical assistance team helping them in the development of assessment tools, data collection and analysis. They will ensure that all technical (engineering) aspects are captured comprehensively within the VFM framework.
Purpose of the role
The role of the infrastructure specialist is to provide engineering advisory support to the technical assistance team helping them in the development of assessment tools, data collection and analysis. He will ensure that all technical (engineering) aspects are captured within the VFM framework comprehensively.
The consultant/specialist should be an Infrastructure specialist having a Civil engineering or other appropriately relevant degree and will be required to have:
- Proven expertise in and experience of design standards and procedures for design and implementation of rural infrastructure both by contract and community-led approaches.
- At least 5 years of knowledge and experience of developing, implementing and reviewing project design in labor-based and community-led construction.
- Knowledge of performance audit techniques including costing of outputs, process mapping, and performance measurement to ensure VfM.
- Expertise in reconciliation of design and construction methods with the constraints of labor, materials and transport.
- Previous experience of cost-benefit/effective/utility analysis and/or value for money studies with international development projects,
- Experience of working with C&W on ADP projects will be preferred
The Infrastructure specialist will be responsible to complete the following tasks:
- Set out a detailed methodology to complete the objectives of the study stated above. Participates, as requested, in the development of scope, goal setting, framework design processes
- Develop the research tools and conduct field investigation of the required facilities in accordance with professional engineering standards and guidelines.The survey will cover all aspects of the evaluation of the basic facilities.
- Prepare draft reports on the study, including Tabulation and working draft of report.
- Work with relevant TA delivery team to ensure quality control for study.
A final report containing a comprehensive value for money evaluation findings and recommendations will be shared by the specialist.
30 days between December 2016 and February 2017
The consultant will work closely with the KESP technical team and will report to the Deputy Team Leader/Monitoring and Evaluation Lead.