New Delhi: Transform Schools, an initiative of People For Action (PFA) is a non-profit committed to improving the quality of education in elementary and secondary government schools in India. Nearly 83.6 million (UDISE 2016-17) children from low-income households rely on these schools for education and future life opportunities. Since its inception in January 2019, Transform Schools has rapidly scaled its models to reach 2.4 million children in 67,833 schools, across 4 States of Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, working with State governments and key stakeholders associated with Samagra Shiksha Abhiyaan.

In an event today, Transform Schools and its supporters came together at India International Center to share the work done by the organisation, discuss initial results of the pilot study conducted by J-PAL, South Asia to study the effectiveness of Transform Schools’ learning programme and to call stakeholders to action to tackle the learning crisis in India, at scale. The findings from J-PAL and other independent research show the following results:

· Speedy learning: The average effect of participation in Transform-Learning is equivalent to up to 2.5 years of typical progress in school.

· Impact on learning levels: 5 of 10 students jump one level of learning (Class 3, Class 5, Class 8) from baseline and 3 of 10 students attain grade appropriate learning levels.

· Increased Teaching Proficiency: Almost 82% of teachers rated as learners, moved up to the proficient level and 21% of teachers rated as proficient, moved up to the expert level.

· Better School Management Practices: Out of the 1,285 schools that participated in the ‘Transform Schools’ programme, 78% developed annual plans for schools for the first time.

· Improved School Standards: The programme intervention increased the number of governors with correct knowledge of school standards from 36% to 72%.

“We launched Transform Schools just 11 months ago, and we are delighted by the enthusiastic response received from teachers, head teachers and government officials”, said Pankaj Vinayak Sharma, Executive Director, Transform Schools. “India is projected to have the largest workforce in the world by 2027. Access to quality and equitable education is important towards the preparation of a productive workforce and we aim to contribute significantly towards meeting this goal. We are already impacting 2.4 million children in 67,833 government secondary schools. We now aim to impact learning levels of 6.5 million children by 2021. Of the total number of students reached, we aim to empower 3.6 million students to improve their learning levels, 2.6 million students to attain Class appropriate learning levels and 217,000 teachers to become proficient and effective.”

“Transform Schools is focussed on improving learning outcomes and is a valuable technical partner for Haryana State. Together, we have collaborated to roll out Saksham Vriddhi programme (learning enhancement programme) for class 9 in 3 districts of Nuh, Ambala and Karnal. The government is also considering the expansion of this learning programme to all districts from the academic year 2020-21. My best wishes for the partnership between Transform and Haryana Government. And congratulations to team Transform on the launch!””- Dr. Rakesh Gupta, IAS, Project Director CM’s Good Governance Associates Program, Haryana, Nodal Officer, Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, CM office, Haryana,

India is projected to have the largest workforce in the world by 2027. Yet, 6 out of 10 students in government elementary schools can only read Class II level text and 7 out of 10 in government secondary schools are performing below Class appropriate level hindering their transition to higher education, limiting access to employment opportunities, and perpetuating the cycle of poverty.

Transform Schools together with its partners pledged to take its learning programme to 7 States in India by 2021 to reach 6.5 million children in elementary and secondary government schools to improve secondary school readiness and excellence. It will seek partnerships with State governments and will work with students, teachers, school governors, head teachers, schools to effect access to quality and equitable education. The event also shared the commitment from International and national researchers to test Transform Schools’ interventions and develop a greater understanding of learning, behavioral and structural issues through partnerships with researchers affiliated with J-PAL, South Asia and Ideas42. It called upon the donor community and corporates to pledge resources and make significant investments to implement and sustain efforts to improve the quality of and equity in school education, at scale.

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