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                      Government of The Gambia
                   Department of State Education
    Department For International Development, UK

                                      The Gambia:
    Basic Support for Poverty Reduction (BESPOR)

                                   DOCUMENT 02

                          Report of the Advisers:
                        Monitoring and Evaluation
                                (Baseline Studies)

                                  December 2005
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

                           Report Distribution and Revision Sheet

Project Name:     BESPOR                       Project Code: XX BA01

Report No.:

Report Title:   Report of the Advisers: Monitoring and Evaluation

Rev             Date            Originators                Checker           Approver
                                Nancy Yildiz                                 Yang Min

"This document has been prepared for the titled project or named part thereof and should not
be relied on or used for any other project without an independent check being carried out as to
its suitability and prior written authority of Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) being
obtained. Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) accepts no responsibility or liability for
the consequences of this document being used for a purpose other than the purpose for which
it was commissioned. Any person using or relying on the document for such other purposes
agrees, and will by such use and reliance be taken to confirm his agreement to indemnify
Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) for all loss and damage resulting therefrom.
Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) accepts no responsibility or liability for this
document to any party other than the person by whom it was commissioned."

"To the extent that this report is based on information supplied by other parties,
Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) accepts no liability for any loss or
damage suffered by the client, whether contractual or tortious, stemming from any
conclusions based on data supplied by parties other than Cambridge Education
Consultants Ltd. (CEC) and used by Cambridge Education Consultants Ltd. (CEC) in
preparing this report."

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

                                 LIST OF CONTENTS
Executive Summary

1. List of Agreed Actions

2. Aims of the Consultancy Visit

3. Main Activities

  3.1 Strand 3 Baseline Study of Teaching and Learning Conditions
      3.1.1 Rapid Appraisal in Region 5
      3.1.2 Development of Survey Instruments
      3.1.3 Piloting of Survey Instruments in Region 5
      3.1.4 Preparation for Baseline Data Collection
      3.1.5 Training of Data Collectors and Data Collection – January 2006
      3.1.6 Technical Support for Data Analysis and Interpretation
      3.1.7 Logistics and Budgets
      3.1.8 Capacity Development of TLC Team

  3.2 Update on Strand 1 – EFA Assessment

  3.3 Update on Strand 2- National Assessment Tests for Grades 3 and 5

  3.4 Update on Strand 4 – Longitudinal School-based Case Studies

  3.5 Next Steps.

Annex 1: Terms of Reference for M&E Consultant Visit
Annex 2: Schedule of Visits
Annex 3: Persons Consulted
Annex 4: TORs for Gender Consultant
Annex 5: TLC Team Members
Annex 6: Workshop Schedule and Agenda
Annex 7: Schedule and Logistics for Trialling Instruments in Region 5
Annex 8: School ID Codes
Annex 9: ID codes for Teachers, Pupils and Communities
Annex 10: List of Potential Cluster Monitors to be Data Collectors
Annex 11: TORs for Data Analyst
Annex 12: Draft Budget for Data Collection
Annex 13: TORs for International Consultant

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project


BCS                    Basic Cycle School
BESPOR                 Basic Education Support to Poverty Reduction
CREDIT                 Curriculum, Research Directorate and Information Technology
CTL                    Conditions of Teaching and Learning
CM                     Cluster Monitor
DC                     Data Collector
DH                     Deputy Head
DoSE                   Department of State Education
EFA                    Education for All
EMIS                   Education Management Information System
HT                     Head Teacher
ITC                    Information Technology, Communication
LBS                    Lower Basic School

M&E                    Monitoring and Evaluation
PTAC                   Parent Teacher Association Committee
SQAD                   Standards, Quality Assurance Directorate
TORs                   Terms of Reference
RED                    Regional Education Director
REO                    Regional Education Office#
UBS                    Upper Basic School
VSO                    Volunteer Service Overseas
WAEC                   West African Examinations Council
WSD                    Whole School Development

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

                                   EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The International M&E Consultant visited BESPOR Project between November 22nd and
December 16th, 2005 to facilitate the development of the Strand 3 Baseline Study and to
review preparatory activities for Strands 2 and 4.

Substantial progress was made in developing and trialling Strand 3 baseline instruments that
will be used to collect data on teaching and learning conditions in Region 5. There was
strong commitment and participation of key stakeholders from the Department of State
Education at the national and regional levels as well as from the BESPOR National
Consultant for Gender and Community Participation. The key outputs of the three week
assignments were:

1. the formation of a core team of six members to support the development of the baseline
instruments with representation from Region 5 and DoSE headquarters;
2. increased awareness of the importance of baseline research among the TLC Core team
members and their increased capacity to conduct rapid appraisals of schools and develop
appropriate baseline instruments that reflect an integrated approach to whole school
3. the development and trialling of eight survey instruments to be used in focussed
interviews, either one-on-one or in small groups. Separate instruments were designed for
head and deputy teachers, LBS and UBS teachers, pupils in Grades 5/6 pupils, PTA
Executive Committee, and the wider community. School information sheet and observation
forms were also developed to support the data collection process and analysis; and
4. the development of selection criteria for data collectors and terms of reference for the
data analyst.

Discussions on data collection timelines and procedures and training of data collectors were
held with various stakeholders with the following recommendations:
- five teams, comprised of five members of which two are female, should be organized to
    collect the data in 40 schools in Region 5;
- intensive 5-day training of data collectors and additional two days for team leaders
    should be mounted in early February in Region 5 prior to the data collection;
- data collection should be carried out over a ten-day period in February with each team
    being responsible for eight schools and spending one full day in each school and its
- the selection of data collectors will rest with DoSE at the national for those persons
    outside of Region 5 and with the Director of Region 5 for those within the Region;
- the logistics for data training and data collection will be the responsibility of Region 5 in
    consultation with those persons at DoSE responsible for Strand 3 and from BESPOR
- a circular should be sent out to all schools in Region 5 informing them of the forthcoming
    baseline study. The schools will be selected randomly except for BESPOR schools and
    teams will arrive unannounced; and
- the budget would be revisited and fine-tuned to reflect the changing scope of the
    baseline study and the need for logistic support for five teams, all collecting data at the
    same time.

The proposed schedule and tasks for moving forward with Strand 3 are detailed in Section

Limited time did not permit an extensive review of progress of Strand 2. Meetings with the
World Bank team and BESPOR resulted in the identification of a series of steps to ensure
that the national assessment testing is on schedule and that WAEC has the capacity and
resources to meet its commitments. These include the need to: form a management
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

committee to oversee the logistics and process, moving the trialling dates ahead to allow
more time to prepare, getting the support of SMT and GTU to test teachers’ knowledge of
the subject matter, and mounting a campaign to increase awareness of DoSE’s plans to test
Grades 3 and 5 pupils nationwide.

For Strand 4, preparation has started with the involvement of the Director of Tertiary/Higher
education in Strand 3 data collection to prepare the way for this longitudinal study. The plan
to track a selected number of BESPOR schools in Region 5 remains on track but
implementation has been delayed until February-March 2006. Preliminary tasks will include
identification of a research team, a workshop on the design and scope of the study and
training of team members. This will take place in March with data collection now re:
scheduled for April 2006.


There is an on-going need to revise and/or fine-tune the budgets before disbursement of
funds. This requires high level management decisions on per diem rates and honoraria for
resource persons before this can happen. E.g. decisions are whether the FTI rate of D588
should be followed or adjusted upwards due to higher accommodation and meals costs
needs to be reviewed. Similarly, guidelines for payment of honoraria to resource persons
and costing out of other budget items needs to be clarified; e.g. costs related to rental of
workshop space, fuel, supplies, printing, photocopying, etc. Access to this information will
better assist Consultants to prepare budgets to the level of detail required by BESOR

The proposed baseline studies require a considerable amount of technical support from the
M&E Consultants and to a lesser extent from the National Gender Consultant. This can
quickly use up the number of allotted days for Consultants. BESPOR management will need
to make strategic decisions on how best to do utilize the Consultants’ time and in what
capacity. This report recommends that wherever possible the administration of the baseline
studies, including logistics, be left to DoSE and WAEC. The M&E Consultants should
concentrate on providing focussed technical support and training and avoid duplication of
efforts wherever possible.

For Strand 3, the next inputs by the International Consultant will focus on finalizing the
baseline instruments, the development of training materials, the training of data collectors,
and working with the data analyst on the kind of data analysis required. This will require
three additional days to pull the instruments together before the end of December for review
by other BESPOR Consultants as well as up to 27 days in the field for the activities
mentioned above. Facilitating data analysis and reporting will require up to 14 days. The
support of the National Consultant on Gender is required to finalize the community survey
instruments (3 days), training of data collectors in using participatory approaches with the
communities (up to 10 days incl. travel) and for data interpretation and reporting of Strand 3
findings (5 or more days). The number of days for both consultants is relatively high and
alternative solutions may need to be found to support the data collection process and writing
up of the results. Suggestions are most welcomed.

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project


                                  Strand 3 Baseline Study

Dates                Activities

By Dec. 31, 2005     Completing Baseline Instruments – 3 days – N. Yildiz
By Jan. 6, 2006      Review of Instruments by BESPOR Consultants (1/2 day)
Jan 13 –Feb 10th     Nancy Yildiz in The Gambia (24 to 27 days incl. travel days)I
By Jan. 16           Circular to RED 5 Schools of Forthcoming Baseline Survey
By Jan. 16           Identification of Data Collectors by DoSE and RED 5
By Jan. 16           Revised Budget for Strand 3
By Jan. 20           Logistics Planning for Training of Data Collectors and Data Collection (M.
                     Sowe, Mr. Swareh and Mr. Bah RED 5)
Jan. 16-17-18        Review Baseline Instruments by Core Team with N. Yildiz (3 days)
Jan. 19-26           Printing of Baseline Instruments (at least 7 days)
Jan. 19-26           Preparation of Training Materials for Data Collectors and Other Materials
                     for Data Collection . N. Yildiz with O. Jatta, M. Sowe and I. Touray (PT)
Jan. 24              Meeting with M&E Management Team to report on Progress
Jan. 23-Feb.3        Design of Database by Data Analyst (2 weeks?)
Jan. 28              Travel to RED 5 --N. Yildiz, M. Sowe, I. Touray
Jan. 29,30           Training of Team Leaders
Jan. 31st            Preparation of Team Survey Packages
Jan. 31st            Data Collectors travel to RED 5
Feb 1-5              Training of Data Collectors
Feb. 5th P.M.        Teams travel to their base camps to start data collection
Feb 6th              Full Day Trial Run for Each Team
Feb. 7-16            Data Collection -- over 10 days with Feb. 12th as day off
Feb. 17              Debriefing of Data Collectors - one day
Feb. 18              Data Collectors return to their respective homes
Feb. 20 Mar.06       Data Entry and Cleaning -- up to 2 weeks
Mar. 6-19            Data Analysis– up to 2 weeks
Mar. 20-31           Data Interpretation and Report Writing -- up to 10 days for TLC Team
                     with Consultants.

Strand 3: Survey of Teaching and Learning Conditions

No.   Tasks                                             Timeline       Persons Responsible
1.0 Awareness Campaign and Support
1.1   Discuss proposed Baselines Studies with           As soon as     BESPOR Team Leader
      SMT and CCM and get their endorsement.            possible
1.2   Build awareness of BESPOR in RED 5 and            Before the     Nancy to draft circular,
      forthcoming survey of teaching and learning       end of term    E. Petersen to fax to
      conditions that will take place in February                      Mr. Swareh for
      2006.                                                            circulation to all
2.0 Budget for Strand 3: Data Collection
2.1   Confirm DSA Rates for team leaders and            As soon as     E. Petersen with Mr.
      data collectors as well as prepare written        possible       Sanneh
      guidelines re: when and to whom honoraria
      should be paid.
2.2   Prepare a detailed budget for Strand 3 to         Before 11th    Draft: N Yildiz
      cover all activities related to finalization of   of January,    Finalize:M. Sowe with
      instruments, data training and data collection.   2006           M. Sonko, E. Petersen

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

Strand 3: Survey of Teaching and Learning Conditions

No.    Tasks                                               Timeline      Persons Responsible

2.3    Prepare a mini-budget for training activities       Before 11th   Mr. Swareh with input
       and data collection being conducted in RED 5        of Jan.       from M. Sowe
2.4    Budget Approved                                     By 13th of    E. Petersen
                                                           Jan. 2006
3.0 Formation of Data Collection Team
3.1    Identify possible data collectors in                By 13th of    DoSE: M. Sowe with
       consultation with DoSE and The Director of          Jan.          Omar Jatta
       RED following the criteria agreed on (see
       Annex xx).
3.2    Screen potential candidates where necessary         By 13th of    M. Sowe with Omar
       and select a core team of 20 data collectors.       January,      Jatta at national level.
       RED 5 to select 7 of the 20 persons from that       2006          Mr. Swareh for RED 5
       that region.
3.3    Confirm data collection team and inform them        By 16 of      M. Sowe, Mr. Swareh
       in writing of full schedule (training dates, data   January,      in consultation with
       collection timelines, etc)                          2006          Mr.Sanneh and Erling
4.0 Preparation of Baseline Instruments
4.1    Complete TLC Surveys with Crosschecks               By Dec. 31,   N. Yildiz (3 -4 days)
       (unable to finish for this consultancy)             2005
4.2    BESPOR Consultants to review and give               By 6th of     N. Santcross, M.
       comments                                            Jan. 2006     Young, G. Terry
4.3    TLC Team to review second drafts and                Jan 16-18     TLC Core Team with
       triangulate data, finalize instruments                            N. Yildiz
4.4    Print sufficient number of Instruments to           Jan. 19-26    BESPOR
       cover 40 schools (quality of printing must be                     Administration
4.5    Meeting with M&E Management Team and                January 24t   M. Sonko to organize
       other key stakeholders to Baseline Study
5.0 Training of Data Collectors
5.1    Arrange logistics for training workshop for         By 25th of    Mr. Suwareh with Musa
       data collectors and base camps for data             Jan. 2006     Sowe, Omar Jatta and
       collection.                                                       Lilian Breakell
5.2    Prepare Training Materials for Data                 Jan. 19-26    N. Yildiz, O. Jatta, M.
       Collectors (incl. Printing) and Guidelines for                    Sowe, (5 days) I.
       Data Collection                                                   Touray (2 days)
5.3    Preparation of Supplies to go up-country            Jan. 19-26    BESPOR Admin

5.4    Travel to Region 5                                  Jan. 28       TLC Team
                                                                         N. Yildiz, I. Touray
5.5    Training of Team Leaders (Core TLC Team)            Jan 29-30     TCL Team with N.
                                                                         Yildiz and I. Touray

5.6    Preparation of Materials for the Five Survey        Jan. 31st     TCL Team with N.
       Teams                                                             Yildiz
5.7    Conduct Training of Data Collectors                 Feb. 1-5      TCL Team with N.
       (Workshops and Practical Field Trips)               (5 days)      Yildiz, I. Touray
5.8    Data Collectors Travel to Base Camp near            Feb. 5 p.m.   Each DC Team
       Clusters they will monitor
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

Strand 3: Survey of Teaching and Learning Conditions

No.    Tasks                                             Timeline         Persons Responsible
5.9    Each team to trial instruments in a school for    Feb. 6th         Each DC Team
       a full day
5.9    Data Collection (5 Teams will cover 10            Feb 7-16         Each DC Team
       clusters –each team to cover 8 schools)
5.10   Bring completed survey forms into RED 5           Feb. 17          M. Sonko and M. Sowe
       and hold debriefing meeting                                        with DC Teams
5.11   Data Collectors to travel their homes/regions     Feb 18           All involved

6.0 Data Entry and Data Analysis
6.1   Confirm Data Analyst and prepare Contract          By 20 of         M. Sonko
                                                         Jan. 2006        E. Petersen
6.2    Design database and Master Link files             Jan. 23-         Data Analyst
                                                         Feb. 3
6.3    Identify Kind of Analysis Required                Feb. 7-8         M. Sonko and N. Yildiz
                                                                          with Data Analyst
6.4    Data Entry and Cleaning                           Feb. 20-Mr.      Data Analyst
6.5    Data Analysis                                     Mar. 6-19        Data Analyst

6.6    Data Interpretation and Report writing            March 20-        Data Analyst, TLC
                                                         31               Team with M. Sonko,
                                                                          N. Yildiz and I. Touray

 Strand 2 National Assessment Test                      Timelines         Responsible
2.1    Mount an awareness campaign of the               As soon as        E. Petersen with
       forthcoming national assessment test of          possible          DoSE Planning and
       Grades 3 and 5 through SMT and CCM                                 WAEC
2.2    Get support of DoSE and Gambia                   As soon as        E. Petersen, M. Sonko
       Teacher’s Union to include an assessment         possible          with M Jallow of DoSE
       of Grade 3 and 5 teachers as part of the                           Planning
       national assessment testing
2.3    Establish a Management Committee for             As soon as        E. Petersen with M.
       National Assessment Test lead by DoSE.           possible          Sonko with DoSE
2.4    Discuss with WAEC sampling procedures:           As soon as        TBA (Consultant from
       e.g. sampling schools or pupils                  possible          World Bank
2.5    Discuss revision of timelines for trialling of   As soon as        Malamin Sonko (?) in
       test items (aim for Feb)and administration       possible          consultation      with
       of national test (aim for end of May                               BESPOR TL
       beginning of June)
2.6    Review data collection forms for pupils and      By 20th of Jan.   M. Sonko, N. Yildiz
       teachers that were drafted by WAEC and           2006
       give feedback
2.8    Develop an Implementation Plan for               By 20 Jan         WAEC with support
       National Assessment with a revised budget        2006              from Malamin Sonko
       that is more detailed. Also develop a mini-                        and/or World Bank
       budget for trial testing
2.9    Approve budgets                                  By 30 of          BESPOR TL
                                                        January           World Bank??
2.10   Trial Testing                                    Late Feb-         WAEC in collaboration
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

                                                      March 2006   with DoSE
2.11   Revisions and Finalize of Tests                By 30 March  WAEC
2.12   Printing of Tests                                           WAEC
                                                      By end of April
2.13   Logistics for Nationwide Assessment            By mid April WAEC in collaboration
                                                                   with DoSE
2.14   Conduct National Assessment Tests              Late-May and WAEC with DoSE
                                                      Early June
2.15   Data Entry and Cleaning                        June-July    WAEC
2.16   Data Analysis and Reporting                    August-      WAEC

Strand 4: Longitudinal School-based Case              Timelines         Responsible
2.1    Following Strand 3 data collection, mount      As soon as        M. Sowe with Mr.
       an awareness campaign among BESPOR             possible          Swareh of RED 5
       Target schools of this longitudinal study.
2.2    Revise timelines for Strand 4                  As soon as        M. Sowe
2.3    Workshop to identify scope of study and        By Feb. 2006      M. Sowe, M. Sonko, N.
       criteria to select schools and cohorts to be                     Yildiz
       involved in the study
2.4    Identify core team members for Strand 4        By Feb. 2006      M. Sowe in
                                                                        consultation with N.
                                                                        Yildiz, M. Sonko
2.5    Draft a two-week training programme            By Feb. 2006      M. Sowe in
                                                                        consultation with N.
                                                                        Yildiz and M. Sonko

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project


The M&E International Consultant visited BESPOR between the 22nd of November and 16th
of December, 2005 to support the planning and implementation of baseline studies for
Strands 3 and 4 and report on progress of Strand 2. Tasks included:

1.   development and trialling of Strand 3 instruments;
2.   planning the next steps for data collection and analysis of Strand 3;
3.   input into preparatory activities for Strand 4 – the qualitative case studies; and
4.   updating of tasks and timelines for Strand 2 –National Assessment Tests.

During the visit, relevant project documents were reviewed and working sessions were held
with key education stakeholders who were or would be involved in the baseline studies. The
National M&E Consultant, Mr. Malamin Sonko, coordinated the logistics and the National
Gender Consultant, Dr. Isatou Touray was given a short-term contract of nineteen days to
support the development of baseline instruments and address issues related to gender

The terms of reference are in Annex 1, a schedule of visits in Annex 2, and persons
consulted with their contact information is in Annex 3. TORs for the Gender Consultant are
in Annex 4.


3.1 Strand 3: Survey of Teaching and Learning Conditions

The major thrust of this consultancy was to design and trial baseline instruments for Strand 3.
These instruments will be used to collect data on teaching and learning conditions in Region
5 in January 2006. The development process took place over three week period, November
23rd to December 15th, 2005.

The original plan to have DoSE/SQAD or Gambia College lead this strand had not been
resolved at the time of this visit. This resulted in the International M&E Consultant, N.Yildiz,
taking the lead with support from the National Gender Consultant, Dr. Isatou Touray, and the
National SQAD officer, Mr. Omar Jatta. The core team was joined by three education staff
from Region 5 – one Senior Education Officer, one Upper Basic School Principal and one
VSO Volunteer. See Annex 5 for a list of names of the TLC Team.

3.1.1   Rapid Appraisal in Region 5

The starting point to develop the baseline instruments was a review of the proposed whole
school development (WSD) model. Key areas with possible education indicators were
identified along with a host of possible questions/topics to consider. These key areas
reflected the six major components of WSD. The indicators were aligned with the areas that
the Cluster Monitors are responsible for monitoring. This working document was used as a
guideline for the rapid appraisal of six schools.

These schools in the Central River Division (Region 5) were visited between November 30
and December 1st. The purpose was to gather preliminary data that would help the team
develop the survey questionnaires. See Table 1 for a list of schools. All six TCL members
participated in this activity over a four day period. The Team visited each school for a half-
day. One on one Interviews were held with head teachers, deputies, and a cross-section of
teachers (qualified, unqualified, and teacher trainees). Small group discussions were held
with PTA members, parents and pupils, both boys and girls. Many of the interviews touched

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

on the same questions in order to cross-check information and identify possible areas for
triangulation of data of the different stakeholders.

                                         Table 1:
                          Schools Visited During Rapid Appraisal

                 1       Kerewan Samba Sera LBS
                2        Jammally LBS
                3         Nyanga Bantang BCS
                4        Sambang UBS`
                5        Kudang UBS
                6        Njau LBS

The schools selected for this exercise were not the schools that were targeted for Phase 1 of
BESPOR. The BESPOR target schools will be done during the actual data collection in
February 2006.

The outcomes of this rapid assessment of schools helped to prioritize the areas where
relevant data could be collected and identify factors that the team needed to consider when
developing the survey instruments. The key findings directed the team to pay close attention
to the following areas; e.g.

Leadership and Management

The extent to which:
   - The school has created a safe and secure environment
   - School policies are clearly understood and jointly developed with key stakeholders
   - Senior Managers are trained in school management
   - School-based supervision and monitoring are happening
   - Routine school records (e.g. timetable, attendance, supplies etc.) are up-to-date
   - PTACs are active with transparent decision-making process and financial accounting

Professional Development of Teachers

The extent to which:
   - Teachers are active participants in the development of the school and PTACs.
   - In-service training supports the professional development of teachers
   - Teacher Trainees are receiving support from their mentors and coping with the
       distance education assignments
   - Punctuality and mobility of teachers impacts on pupil contact hours and the quality of
       teaching and learning;
   - Teacher’s welfare (basic needs for housing, salaries on time) impact on their

Curriculum Coverage and Teaching and Learning Resources

The extent to which:
   - The curriculum is being covered within the allotted timeframe and factors that impede
       complete coverage
   - Access to and timely delivery of teaching resources, textbooks and supplies

Pupil Welfare

The extent to which:

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

   -   Pupils are marginalized because of poverty (no books or lunch given if pupils have
       not paid)
   -   Corporal punishment, sexual harassment and other forms of punishment exist in
   -   Pupils’ have access to a well-balanced diet

Community Participation and Support

The extent to which:
   - Parents are aware of and support the development of the school;
   - Community views on SFP, corporal punishment, pupils with SEN are integrated into
       regular classes

Communication and Working Relationships

The extent to which:
   - The working relationships and support mechanism among all key stakeholders is
       supporting or hindering the school’s development (Cluster Monitors and Schools,
       School Managers and teachers, schools and PTACs/Communities)
   - Cluster Monitors are monitoring and supporting the school development process
   - The flow of information to/from the Regional Office to schools, teachers communities
       is effective

3.1.2 Development of Survey Instruments

Following the rapid appraisal, the TCL Team developed the survey instruments. This took
place between December 3rd and 8th at the Sunset Beach Hotel in Banjul. A copy of the
timetable and activities is in Annex 6. The outcomes of that workshop was a first draft of
eight baseline survey instruments as per Table 2. Each instrument was designed to be
conducted as a focussed interview. Prompts for the Data Collector were included in each
survey form as well as a checklist of documents to be observed after the interview. These
will require further revision.
                                           Table 2
                               Instruments for Baseline Survey
                             On Teaching and Learning Conditions

                  No.   Survey Instruments
                   1    Head Teacher/ Deputy Head Survey
                   2    LBS Teacher Survey
                   3    UBS Teacher Survey
                   4    BCS Teacher Survey
                   5    LBS Pupil Survey
                   6    UBS Pupil Survey
                   7    PTAC Survey
                   8    Community Survey
                Other Baseline Forms
                 Doc 1 School Information Sheet
                 Doc 2 School Observation Form
                 Doc 3 LBS Enrolment/Attendance Data Form
                 Doc 4 UBS Enrolment/Attendance Data Form
                 Doc 5 Teacher Attendance Form

A school information sheet and school observation forms were developed at the same time.
The information sheet collects pertinent background information on the school similar to

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

EMIS data. The observation forms assess facilities (e.g. dangerous classrooms), furnishings
(desks/chairs), teaching and learning resources but in less detail than EMIS. A decision was
taken not to count books and desk/chairs but to identify which of these items were adequate,
inadequate, or severely inadequate. This was based on ratios of number of pupils per desk
and number of books shared among pupils.

A decision was also taken to collect attendance data on pupils and teachers. This was done
by looking at school and class registers and the teacher attendance book over a specified
time period. It is expected that an analysis of teachers and pupils not reporting on time after
the holidays will shed some light on the reduction of pupil contact hours. Analysis of pupils’
attendance should provide preliminary data on dropouts which was not being collected by
EMIS at this point in time.

3.1.3   Piloting of Survey Instruments in Region 5

The trialling of the instruments took place from December 12th to the 14th and involved two
teams. Team 1 visited three schools on the south bank and Team 2 visited three schools on
the north bank. Schedule and other logistic information are in Annex 7. Schools visited
                              Table 3: Trialling of Instruments

           Team 1 (South Bank            Team 2 (North Bank
           Njoren LBS                    Demfai Njaga LBS
           Sare Njai BCS                 Jarumeh Koto BC
           Bansang UBS                   Kuntaru UBS

The teams were joined by Musa Sowe, the Director of DoSE/Higher Education. His
participation had two objectives. One was to be a floater and observe how the data collection
process was being implemented and could be improved. The second was to familiarize
himself with the kind of data being collected as a preparatory step for developing Strand 4 –
the longitudinal study of ten BESPOR target schools.

Schools were not forewarned of the team’s visit to avoid contamination of data and schools
prepping themselves to look good. Many schools did not know their EMIS ID Code so a
special ID Codes were assigned all schools in Region 5 for Strand 3. A master list can be
found in Annex 8. The codes indicate the region +cluster number + school number within
cluster. Schools that are bolded on the list have been identified as the BESPOR Target
Schools in Phase 1. For data collection purposes, the ID codes for head teachers, teachers,
pupils, will be preceded by the school code for ease of identification. Examples of these
codes are in Annex 9.

The trialling of the instruments was very intensive and went well. Each team spent a full-day
in each school. In the late afternoon, team debriefings were held back in Janjanbureh to
review and recommend any changes to the instruments and to data collecting procedures.
Where time permitted, changes were made to the instruments and a second draft was
produced. Outcomes of this process included the following recommendations:

1. the need for an awareness campaign as most head teachers interviewed knew very little
   about the forthcoming BESPOR Project;
2. Cluster Monitors (CMs) from Region 5 should not be data collectors as it would be
   difficult for them to be both an interviewer as well as an interviewee (conflicting roles).
   These CMs could possibly play a logistics role to support the data collection teams in
   their respective clusters;
3. Each data collection team should comprise of at least 4 members and preferably five
   with two of the members being female; and
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

4. Selection criteria for Data Collectors (DCs) should take into account that persons
   appointed should:
   - include a wide range of representative stakeholders from national, regional and
      school levels; e.g. CMs from other regions, DoSE/SQAD staff, Gambia College
      instructors, GTU, as well principals and teachers from within RED 5. The proposed
      breakdown would be 7 DCs from RED 5 excluding the Team Leaders (M. Bah, A.
      Mendy and Fiona). The other 13 DCs (excluding O. Jatta and M. Sowe) would come
      from outside the region;
   - not include teaching staff from target BESPOR Schools in RED 5;
   - be able to speak the local languages as most parent and pupils’ comprehension of
      English is too low to conduct the survey in English;
   - be familiar with the lower and upper basic education system in The Gambia;
   - have patience and tolerance when collecting data; and
   - have some experience conducting interviews for research purposes.

Note: This report recommends that the selection of Cluster Monitors from other region
should be based on the assessment and outcomes of the Cluster Monitor Training
Workshop held the week of November 28th through to December 2nd, in Region 4. A
potential list of highly qualified CMs has been made available by the BESPOR Consultant
who conducted the workshop and can be found in Annex 10.

3.1.4 Preparation for Baseline Data Collection

The next steps are to finalize the instruments and this is a four step process.

1. The International M&E Consultant needs to review, cross-check and format the second
   drafts of the instruments and this will take an additional three to four days. There was
   insufficient time to do this during this consultancy.
2. BESPOR Consultants will be invited to review the instruments and give their comments;
3. The TLC team will meet to review the drafts and comments and to check that the
   questions asked allow the researchers to triangulate data across key areas; and
4. A half-day working session will be held with M&E Management Committee and other
   selected stakeholders to review the plans for this baseline study.

Note: The baseline instruments will be kept under tight security to avoid leakage and

3.15 Training of Data Collectors and Data Collection

The original intent to conduct the baseline data collection in mid-January is not possible.
Discussions with the BESPOR Team Leader indicated that key education officers will be
heavily involved in regional planning exercises the week of January 16-20. This will delay the
data collection until the first two weeks of February 2006.

The revised plan is to develop the training materials and data collection procedures in
January, train the data collectors in the first week of February, and collect the data over a
ten-day period immediately following the training. See Section 1.0 for a list of agreed tasks
and proposed schedule.

Data collectors will require intensive training to ensure quality control of the data being
collected. This training will require a minimum of five days for the data collectors and an
additional two days for the team leaders. Training will cover interviewing techniques, time
management, familiarization with the survey forms, use of local language in interviews, as
well as data collection procedures. Facilitators will be N. Yildiz, I. Touray and M. Sowe.

The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

There will be five survey teams to collect the data. Each survey team will comprise of five
persons and be led by one of the core TLC members. Selection of team members would
follow the criteria mentioned above and would be carried out by Mr. Musa Sowe and Mr.
Omar Jatta of DoSE for those DCs coming from outside RED 5. Mr. Swareh, the Director of
Region 5, will do it for those persons coming from within the region.

Schools involved in the data collection in January will not be forewarned of the day of the
baseline team’s visit. However, this report recommends that the RED 5 inform all schools
that a baseline survey for BESPOR will take place sometime in the month of February with
no specific date given and that schools will be randomly selected.

During the data collection, Mr. Musa Sowe will supervise the five teams, visiting each team
at least twice and troubleshooting where required. Debriefing will be held in RED 5 and will
be lead by M. Sonko, the National M&E Consultant. He will also be responsible for ensuring
that the survey data is delivery safely to the Data Analyst.

3.1.6   Technical Support for Data Analysis and Interpretation

Critical to the analysis is the design of a database for data entry and analysis. Two potential
candidates were interviewed by the M&E Consultants. (See Annex 11 for TORs). The
stronger of the two, is Lamin Janneh, and hence the M&E Consultants recommend that
BESPOR/DoSE give serious consideration to hiring him. However, the number of days
required to fulfil the Terms of Reference is difficult to determine until the survey instruments
are finalized and the data analyst has an opportunity to review the scope of work required.

The plan is to design the database in January 2006, enter and analyze the data in late
February and early March and do data interpretation and report writing in the latter part of
March. The TLC team would be involved in the latter activity with the support of the
International and National M&E Consultants and inputs from the National Gender Consultant.

It should be noted that the budget for Strand 3 did not include line items for hiring a Data
Analyst or the cost of purchasing Version 12 of SPSS. As such, it is recommended that the
budget be revisited and necessarily adjustments made to include these aspects.

3.1.7 Logistics and Budgets

To ensure sufficient funds for the above activities, a preliminary budget has been drafted.
This requires further input and review by BESPOR Team Leader and DoSE. (See Annex 12).
The issue of per diem rates and whether or not honoraria will be paid to resource persons
and data collectors needs to be decided before the budget can be finalized. Note: for the
TLC Team, the per diem rates were raised from D588 (FTI rate) to D750 to cover higher
costs of accommodation and meals in Region 5 and in Banjul. In addition, each TLC Team
member was paid an honorarium of D500 per day in recognition of his/her contributions as a
resource person. These rates were approved by the BESPOR Team Leader on a temporary

3.1.8 Capacity Building of TLC Team

It was evident that the whole exercise from the rapid appraisal of schools to develop and
trialling of instruments provided an excellent opportunity to build capacity within DoSE at the
national and regional level. Every team member felt that s/he had grown professionally in a
new directions. Mr. Bah of RED 5 said that prior to this experience he had rarely ventured
into the communities. This exercise taught him that communities have a wealth of ideas and
opinions about the management of schools and they need to be heard. For Mr. O. Jata of
DoSE/SQAD , the exercise brought home the importance of improving the quality of teaching
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

and learning through research, which in turn, can inform policy decisions. Mr. A. Mendy, a
principal of an upper basic school realized important structures and systems that were
missing in his school and has taken steps to correct this in his school. Fiona Stevenson, the
VSO Volunteer, experienced a sharp learning curve as well. The exercise allowed her
opportunities to quicken her understanding of the dire situation in schools outside her cluster
area and identify key factors that continue to impact on the quality of teaching and learning.

3.2.   Update on Strand 1: EFA Assessment of EMIS Data

The plan to do a national EFA Assessment Report for 2001 to 2005 and a sub-sector report
for Region 5 remain the same. What has changed is that the World Bank will fund this
Strand and provide technical support to the Directorate of Planning to address system
problems and conduct training in data analysis and interpretation. This is scheduled to begin
in January 2006. At the time of this report, EMIS data for the 2005-2006 academic year was
being collected. Further details were not available.

3.3    Update on Strand 2: National Assessment Testing of Grade 3 and 5 Students

Preparation for the National Assessment Testing of Grade 3 and 5 pupils is well underway.
A preliminary field visit to Region 5 was carried out by WAEC in June 2005 followed by one-
week training for test item writers in September 2005. Nick Taylor, a consultant in test
development with the Joint Education Trust (JET) in South Africa, was contracted to support
the development of the test items. The Consultant’s Report and WAEC’s three reports on
preparatory activities (e.g. field, visit, alignment of LATs with the national curriculum) are
now on file at the BESPOR Office.

The trialling of the test items across the four core subjects, which was scheduled for late
September 2005, has been delayed until the first part of 2006. Administration of the national
assessment tests to 30% of the Grade 3 and 5 in Gambia is still on track and will take place
at the end of this school academic year (e.g. June or July). There are, however, some
concerns related to budget, the capacity of WAEC to do the job well, and the whole
coordination process; e.g. who will oversee this study and troubleshoot.

Discussions with Mr. Thomas Kellaghan of the World Bank, resulted in the following
recommendations. These need to be taken up with DoSE/Planning and WAEC. They are:

1. WAEC should move the trialling of the test items ahead to February 2006 to allow more
   time to finalize the tests and print sufficient copies for the national assessment;
2. Data Collection should be moved to the end of May or early June to avoid the rains
   impeding access to schools;
3. The sampling should be done by random sampling of pupils, not schools as was done in
   the past;
4. The capacity of WAEC to do the data entry and analysis should be assessed and areas
   identified for support and/or strengthening to ensure a smooth national assessment;
5. The budget for this strand should be revisited and details flushed out as the costing
   appears to be inadequate and no provision was made for the testing of the teachers. A
   detailed implementation plan needs to accompany the budget for approval.
6. A DoSE Committee should be struck to coordinate the scheduling, logistics,
   implementation with WAEC; and
7. Through SMT and CCM, DoSE/WAEC needs to mount an advocacy campaign to let
   regions know of plans to carry out a national assessment test for Grades 3 and 5.

Drafts of the one-page survey on socio-economic conditions of Grade 3 and 5 pupils and
their teachers’ qualifications, etc. have been prepared by WAEC. They still need require
review and input by DoSE/Planning and BESPOR M&E Consultants. The triangulation of
The Government of The Gambia: BESPOR Project

data is expected to yield valuable data on variables that may impact on student performance
and compliment the data collected in Strand 3. The survey data will be collected on the
same day as the national assessment tests.

The plan to give the Grade 3 and 5 teachers similar subject matter tests may be problematic.
The first concern is that the matter requires the support of the Gambia Teachers’ Union.
These talks are scheduled to take place over the next few months between DoSE/BESPOR
and GTU. The second concern is that if subject matter tests are given to teachers they
should reflect a higher level of knowledge than Grade 5. This would require WAEC to add
additional test items in the four core subjects and include the costing in its revised budget.
The third concern is an advocacy campaign mounted by DoSE to let teachers know why
they are being tested and how the results will be used. If the GTU does not agree to a
nationwide test for Grade 3 and 5 teachers, then DoSE and BESPOR should make a case to
test only teachers in RED 5 as part of the baseline data for the WSD model.

3.4 Update on Strand 4: Longitudinal School-based Case Studies

This strand is still in its infancy stages. The design and scope of this longitudinal study will
evolve after Strand 3 data has been collected and analyzed. This will allow Strand 4 to
validate Strand 3 data and probe reasons for the state of the conditions found in the schools
and communities.

During this visit, preparations were started. Timelines were reviewed with the
recommendation to identify the School Case Study Team (SCST) members by February,
conduct two-week training course/field visits in March, and collect the data in April 2006.
Whether or not these timelines can be adhered to requires input from other stakeholders;
(e.g. DoSE and BESPOR management). Mr. Musa Sowe, the Director of Tertiary/Higher
Education and Research (THERD) will lead the team. His current input into trialling Strand 3
survey instruments and data collection is providing a solid foundation to move forward with
Strand 4.

3.5 Next Steps

The M&E Consultants identified several tasks which will require follow up by DoSE and
BESPOR. These are listed in Section 1 – List of Agreed Tasks along with the proposed
schedule for Strand 3. The International M&E Consultant plans to return around the 13 of
January to facilitate the training of data collectors and data collection. TORs are in Annex 13
and require approval by BESPOR management.

Draft 1: Prepared by N. Yildiz


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