BRAC-UBS Shishu Niketan School Project: A Baseline Study
Samir Ranjan Nath, Nowreen Yasmin and Anwar Hossain
Date: 17 December 2017; Time: 09:30 am to 10:30 am; Venue: RED Conference Room (15th Floor)
Research Findings Presentation
BRAC Education Programme (BEP), in collaboration with BRAC-UK, has established 15 low-cost, fee-paying schools called Shishu Niketan in 15 district towns of Bangladesh in 2017. This initiative aims to provide quality primary education to the children of low-income families. The UBS Optimus Foundation is the development partner of this 41 months project starting from August 2016. An evaluation study was designed taking 15 nearby kindergartens as comparison schools along with the intervention schools. The baseline study covered the survey of all 30 schools, 120 teachers, and 882 students from both types of schools. Prevalence of under-and-over-aged students was identified. Careful screening of age of children for admission in age-appropriate grades is, therefore, a task for BEP in upcoming admission session. The socioeconomic background of the students of kindergartens was better in terms of income and asset of households and parental education. Expenditure for the education of the kindergarten students was more than double of that of Shishu Niketan students. Kindergarten teachers were less paid than the Shishu Niketan teachers. Proportionately more teachers of kindergartens were involved in other income generating activities including private tutoring. Whereas two-thirds of the kindergarten students availed private tutoring, it was 13.3% among the students of Shishu Niketans. Teachers were facing the challenge of using new technology in classrooms. Frequent monitoring, classroom observation, and feedback system can develop the overall teaching-learning practices.