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Peru/WB: 5.7 Million Students to Benefit from Improvements in Basic Education

January 17, 2013

40 Thousand Public School Principals to Go Through Transparent Selection Processes and to Receive Training before Taking Office

WASHINGTON, January 17th, 2013 – Some 5.7 million students will benefit from quality public education and more transparent school-principal selection processes in 40,000 Peruvian schools. These are just some of the results expected from a US$25 million loan to Peru’s Ministry of Education (MINEDU) approved today by the World Bank Board of Directors.

Peru has made great strides in terms of educational coverage; however, in quality terms, it still has a way to go. The performance of Peruvian students in both national and international assessments is well below expectations. In the last PISA evaluation of 2009, organized by the OECD and undertaken on a nation-wide sample of 15-year old students, Peru ranked among the last in math, reading comprehension and science among 65 countries participating worldwide, and also exhibited wider socio-economic gaps.

In order to improve the results of public education, the Government has drawn up the Strategic Learning Achievements Program (PELA, in Spanish), focusing on Budgeting-for-Results. This program will establish a robust evaluation system to strengthen and monitor a set of reforms aimed at improving educational quality and learning. National evaluations are an effective tool to improve learning results because they help to showcase the actual progress made by students; that, in turn, helps in the design of better policies and in measuring the impact of programs implemented. It also serves to pinpoint the location of those students and schools that need more support and to allocate resources more efficiently in order to close existing gaps. Moreover, teachers, principals and parents can use the results information to design strategies and follow-up on improvements.

“The Bank brings its vast international experience to assist MINEDU improve its educational quality evaluation systems,” said Susan Goldmark, World Bank Regional Director for Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela.

The project includes three components:

· Evaluation of student learning, including increasing the number of school grades participating in the Student Evaluation Survey (now only applied in second grade); introduce internationally-validated methodologies to measure early childhood development and the quality of preschool services; and support MINEDU to continue Peru’s participation in international evaluations, allowing it to compare its results with those of other countries.

· Evaluation of pedagogical practices, which includes supporting MINEDU in following up and evaluating in-classroom teacher practices, as well as implementing a competitive selection and training system for school principals.

· Strengthen MINEDU’s administrative and fiduciary practices in order to improve program capacities, including the undertaking of independent evaluations, both technical, financial and acquisitions.

The technical assistance provided to Peru by the World Bank in recent years includes Government support to disseminate results of the second-grade Student Evaluation Survey, international internships and workshops with experts to learn from relevant experiences in other places, and recently a new operation to strengthen higher education accreditation and quality assurance systems.

The US$25 million variable spread loan includes a 7-year maturity period and a 4.5-year grace period.

 

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PRESS RELEASE NO:
2013/224/LAC