Supporting Countries to Improve Learning
The fourth LMTF 1.0 recommendation called on international actors to support countries in strengthening their assessment systems and, most importantly, in improving learning levels. Consultation participants identified many challenges to achieving appropriate levels of learning in their countries, including:
- Insufficient political will to assess learning regularly and make the results publicly available.
- Lack of information about how to use data to guide actions that improve learning.
- Lack of national ownership of the assessment system.
- Lack of national institutions with sufficient technical capacity to assess learning.
- Scarcity of neutral sources of information on the advantages and disadvantages of the various assessment tools available.
To address these challenges, the LMTF has asked “Learning Champion” partners to join LMTF 2.0 to work together to advance the goal of more effective assessment systems that can help improve learning outcomes. In 2014, an open call for applications resulted in 15 “Learning Champion” countries, provinces, and cities wishing to adapt the LMTF recommendations to their local contexts. Lessons from 15 LMTF Learning Champions will be used to inform efforts to scale up improvements in how learning is assessed and how the data are used.
The 15 Learning Champions are leading an in-country 18-month process to: convene all relevant stakeholders; diagnose the quality of their assessment systems; and assess the necessary technical and financial resources required to improve learning measurement and outcomes, and develop action plans.
- Mapping. Map the learning assessment landscape and the ways that assessment data are or are not being used to help improve learning outcomes.
- Defining. Define what is needed to improve learning assessments and the use of assessment data to improve student outcomes, including a clear appraisal of various assessment options (e.g. the relative merits and costs of using different assessment schemes).
- Planning. Develop a plan to address the identified needs, working closely with the wide range of partners on the ground.
- Sharing. Champions will share their experiences regularly and provide feedback on the process.
In turn, task force partners and the secretariat will actively help connect Learning Champions with other actors who can help them meet the needs defined through multistakeholder engagement. Learning Champions will join the global LMTF network and will have opportunities to exchange (e.g. virtually and in person) information and experiences with other Learning Champions as well as task force partner organizations. Learning Champions will also play a leading role in developing global good practice on assessment and learning, including helping to shape indicators for global tracking and country-level tools and guidance.
The Learning Metrics Task Force is not a grant-making body, and acceptance as a Learning Champion does not guarantee financial assistance of any kind. Modest funds may be available at the discretion of LMTF partner organizations to support national activities to convene a steering committee or community of practice. The LMTF Secretariat will actively support these efforts and help connect countries with funding opportunities.