Transforming public schools: Impact of the CRI program on child learning in Pakistan
The authors carry out an impact evaluation to determine the composite impact of a PPP that seeks to modify the classroom environment. This PPP is between Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) and Children’s Resource International (CRI) Pakistan, a non-profit training and education organization. Transforming classrooms to be ‘child-friendly’ encompasses a number of inputs including teacher training, improving family literacy and encouraging family involvement in the classrooms, and providing material inputs. The study compares learning outcomes and attendance among children in CRI Program schools with similar children in non- Program schools using propensity score matching. The results indicate a positive and significant effect of child- friendly classrooms on learning; the combined effect across three subjects; English, Urdu and Maths, is found to lead to an improvement of up to 11 percentile in class ranking. Overall, the results present a contrasting picture to previous analyses that examine non-didactic learning approaches and child learning outcomes in a developing country context. However, the cost effectiveness of this intervention must be considered. While this intervention is less costly compared to some ICT interventions, it is costly compared to camera based monitoring or hiring remedial teachers.