PISA 2018 results were released today. 79 countries and 600,000 students took part in the seventh triennial round of the highly scrutinized tests which assess the skills and knowledge of 15-year-olds in maths, reading, and science. Here are a few quick reactions from the edu-data enthusiasts here at CGD.
CGD Policy Blogs
With the UK General Election just two weeks away, we know that international development is a high priority issue for our blog-reading voters. We have examined each of the main party’s manifestos and analysed their international development commitments.
At CGD, we’re working to achieve global gender equality, and in the education program that means a focus on gender equality in education and beyond. Despite access to schooling becoming more equal, gender inequality remains acute and is deeply rooted in economic, political, and social spheres in developed and developing countries. Over the next few years the Education Program will be researching the role that education can (and can’t) play in building more equal societies for men and women.
The ‘Learning Adjusted Year of Schooling’ (LAYS) concept, introduced last year by the World Bank, seeks to combine access and learning outcomes into a single measure, allowing funders to compare directly across different kinds of interventions. We like the idea and applaud innovation in measurement, but think LAYS still has some way to go before it’s really ready to be used as a robust measure by funders.
In 2014, the DFID released a “rigorous review” of the literature on private schools in developing countries. Five years on, there has been a slew of new studies. Do the conclusions still stand? We carried out a quick scan of the research published since 2014 and found that the recent evidence broadly reinforces the earlier findings.
A recent report by the Center for Universal Education at Brookings suggests that private school chains may prove to be valuable supplements to public education. But donors looking for scale should think twice before placing all bets on private school chains. The vast majority of private schools are not part of a chain. They’re run by individual proprietors, otherwise known as “mom n’ pop shops.”
There are just eleven years to go to achieve the many targets under SDG4 and recent reports suggest things are woefully off-track. The UN General Assembly—taking place in New York this week—will be the platform for the announcement of various new initiatives and big funding pledges hoping to fast-track progress toward that goal. With the spotlight on the global education aid architecture, we analysed the latest aid data from the OECD and UNESCO Institute for Statistics to see what it tells us about how much aid is going to education, where it is allocated, by who, and through what channels.
What do the data tell us about gender gaps in education, and where we should be focusing our research, policy, and programmatic efforts to address gender inequality?