IIEP and the Global Partnership for Education have published two new set of guidelines to help countries develop and assess credible, relevant and feasible education sector plans.
Creating education sector plans (ESPs) – which outline the policies and strategies for national education reform – have garnered much attention over the past fifteen years. At the 2000 World Education Forum in Dakar, Senegal, countries pledged that no country with a credible plan would be left behind, no matter its level of resources. As a result, ESPs have come to the forefront as a key prerequisite to building strong, quality education systems for all.
“ESPs are a powerful tool for coordinating partners and for mobilizing additional domestic and external resources. They have become a critical instrument for governments to signal to all potential investors that their education policies are credible, sustainable, and worthy of investment,” say the guidelines.
But what should a credible plan look like? What does it require in terms of government leadership, knowledge and data, institutional and human capacities and dialogue among different stakeholders?
“Guidelines for Education Sector Plan Preparation” takes education planners through the ins and outs of designing a credible plan, from conception, implementation to monitoring and evaluation.
The second set, “Guidelines for Education Sector Plan Appraisal”, is designed to help independent stakeholders in ensuring that that the plan covers all of the expected requirements. This process is urged to take place early in the development of ESPs, to allow for conversation, feedback and revisions to the final version.
Both sets of guidelines are easily adaptable to country contexts and needs. They can also be complemented by other technical manuals on specific tools and methodologies that can be used throughout various stages of creating robust, long-lasting education sector plans.