Community attitudes to education have a huge impact on the quality of learning available to children. We work to raise community awareness of the standard of education children are entitled to, whilst building opportunities for holding schools and government accountable for achieving that standard.
The school performance review report helps us to identify the general problem in our schools so that we know where to focus and how we can allocate resources to support schools to improve.District Education Officer, Rwanda
Strengthening accountability systems
Strengthening accountability is crucial to improving every level of the education system. Increased awareness of educational policies and rights, alongside advocacy training empowers school and community leaders to demand the resources they need.
A core part of our approach is supporting schools to hold community meetings or school performance appraisal meetings to share the results of our school performance review with the wider community. This makes the school’s performance transparent, so everyone is aware of its strengths and weaknesses. Community members are encouraged to reflect on this and add their own views.
The school performance appraisal meeting leads on to the development of the school improvement plan. Through debate and consensus the school and the community decide which improvements to focus on for the next year. They agree who is responsible for leading, supporting and checking on progress against each of the priorities so everyone is held accountable for the roles they agreed to play.
Improving school governance
School governing bodies like School Management Committees, Parent Teacher Associations and Mother Groups create a bridge between the school and the wider community. Committee members are provided with training and support so they can act as community representatives in the school and increase support for education in the community.
For example, they can encourage parents to send their children to school on time and visit classrooms at the beginning of the school day to make sure both teachers and students turn up as expected.