- Working papers -
The Education Policy Working Paper Series is designed to nurture the international debate about a wide range of education policy issues.
- Paper 1. Overview of the Role of Private Providers in Education in Light of the Existing International Legal Framework, 2015
This paper aims at giving an overview of private education – notably for-profit private education and the legal issues at the international level. How can the commercialization of education be reconciled with internationally recognized human rights? It looks at legal issues arising from the increase of private stakeholders in the education sector while suggesting how a private actor should consider financing or delivering education.
- Paper 2. The Privatization of Education in Developing Countries. Evidence and Policy Implications, 2015
This paper reviews key findings from empirical research on the effects of specific modes of privatization of the school provision, particularly in developing countries. It presents a definition of privatization, elaborates on the multiple modes that privatization may take in the schools’ sector in relation to diverse policy goals and reviews findings from prior research on this issue.
This working paper proposes a conceptual framework for obtaining ICT indicators in education which is defined by a set of distinctive features: a holistic and systemic approach, a flexible and comprehensive strategy of analysis and, lastly, a willingness to monitor and set benchmarks to promote innovation.
This Working Paper aims to provide an overview of the international legal framework protecting the right to education of refugees worldwide, including the obligations of States, as well as the main current issues. It also shows that, despite the existence of a strong applicable framework to guarantee the right to education of refugees worldwide, the challenges and obstacles encountered in this context may dramatically prevent its enjoyment. The paper also emphasizes that, even though ensuring the right to education is fundamental in all phases of the situation, there is a particular need to draw attention to the stabilization phase.
- Paper 5. Re-orienting Education Management Information Systems (EMIS) towards inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning, 2018
This Working Paper provides conceptual frameworks and strategies to help countries re-orient their Education Management Information Systems (EMIS) to support inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, in line with Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4). It emphasizes the potential of EMIS to support the implementation of SDG 4 at the national, state, local and classroom levels.
- Paper 6. Building tomorrow’s digital skills - what conclusions can we draw from international comparative indicators?, 2018
This report looks at the conditions impacting the development of digital skills based on five international comparative surveys, the results of which reveal a sample group of twelve countries whose population have particularly high levels of digital skills. Building on these results, this report seeks to answer two questions: what has enabled these countries to rise to the top of the rankings in terms of digital skills, and what can other countries to do catch up?
- Paper 7: Artificial intelligence in education: challenges and opportunities for sustainable development, 2019
Artificial Intelligence is a booming technological domain capable of altering every aspect of our social interactions. In education, AI has begun producing new teaching and learning solutions that are now undergoing testing in different contexts. This working paper, written for education policymakers, anticipates the extent to which AI affects the education sector to allow for informed and appropriate policy responses.
This paper provides analysis and insights on how the right to education for refugees could be ensured from a policy perspective. It outlines some of the extensive barriers to education that refugees face and, as a result of research, collaboration and the invaluable contributions from the participants in a dedicated Expert Meeting in Barcelona (2018), a set of policy recommendations is provided which aims to guide policymakers to ensure equal access to good quality education for refugees.
- Paper 9: The Lifelong Learning approach: implications for education policy in Latin America and the Caribbean, 2020
The World Education Forum (Incheon, Republic of Korea, 2015) proposed “a new vision of education” articulated around the concept of Lifelong Learning (LLL) as a requisite to achieve SDG4. UNESCO proposes LLL as a new paradigm for education and learning in the 21st century. This study analyses the LLL approach and its implications for education policy, with specific reference to Latin America and the Caribbean.
This paper assesses how education has been addressed in massive governments’ fiscal responses, since the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis. It provides a global overview with aggregated data on governments’ stimulus packages aimed at health response, social protection and economic recovery from COVID-19 and an analysis of how much, where and how these stimulus packages are targeted to the education and training sector. Analyses are based on government-led economic stimulus measures, with a focus on fiscal policies directed to education and training.
- Policy reviews -
This primer aims to provide education stakeholders with an introduction to UNESCO’s education policy review (EPR) methodology in the wider context of SDG 4-Education 2030, and how it could be designed as a tool for capacity development leading to improved policymaking and planning in education. It draws largely on the experience gained during the first round of EPRs carried out by the Section of Education Policy from 2011 to 2018. The primer benefitted from major contributions from UNESCO colleagues at Headquarters, regional bureaus and field offices. As a tool for capacity development, this primer provides the foundations for and methodological approach to EPRs. It also guides education stakeholders and authorities on how to use the results of the EPR to foster education sector dialogue and maximize country ownership and the adoption of relevant policy recommendations.
This Education Policy Review report highlights the distinctive features of Mongolia’s socio-economic and political context, and its geospatial specificity, which shape current and future relationships between education, society and the environment. It provides an overview of education sector development, including introductory analysis of access and participation, and of the quality of education processes and performance.
This report synthesizes the findings and policy recommendations of the education system of Sudan. The review covered three policy domains: teacher policies and development; out-of-school children and literacy policy; sector-wide policy and planning. The resulting recommendations are fully aligned with the emphasis placed on SDG 4-2030 targets. This is the first policy review carried out in the Arab region. Despite the multiple educational challenges in meeting national aspirations and global demands, Sudan continues to spearhead the Dubai Roadmap in the Arab region and has the potential to serve as a role model in the region and beyond.
- Also available in Arabic
Peru education policy review, 2017 (Available in Spanish only)
The Peru education policy review report provides an overview of the education system, using the lenses of equity and quality. These lenses are also applied to the analysis of the three priority policy domains: Decentralized Education Management, Teacher Policy Development, and Learning Strategies. The methodological approach, main policy issues, and priority recommendations for the achievement of SDG4, are presented in an annex to the report.
Available in Spanish only.
- Guatemala education policy review, 2017 (Available in Spanish only)
This report provides an overview of the education system in Guatemala, including a detailed analysis of education indicators. It identifies the main priorities in relation to the SDG4-Education 2030 agenda and framework for action. Information and data are analysed in three policy domains - Curriculum, Teachers and Secondary Education - leading to recommendations to promote inclusive and equitable quality education. The report includes an annex that explains the methodological approach and methods used to conduct this policy review, in the context of SDG4-Education 2030.
This report provides an overview of education in Albania including the structure of the education system, relevant legislation and information on equity and quality. Three priority domains are explored: curriculum development and reform; ICT in education; and teacher and school leadership policies. In each, the main policy issues are identified, in light of data analysed, and recommendations are elaborated. The report also identifies possible future areas for international cooperation in the context of SDG4-Education 2030.
This review focuses on five policy domains, identified as national priorities in relation to Zambia’s Vision 2030: system-wide policy and planning; teacher policies and development; technical education, vocational and entrepreneurship training; youth and adult literacy and education, and; monitoring and assessment of learning achievement. As a first policy review in Africa, it is a model for UNESCO-led capacity development within the framework of the SDG4-Education 2030 agenda.
This document synthesizes the findings and policy recommendations of the education system of St Kitts and Nevis. The review covered four policy domains: academic staff policy; curriculum development; teaching and learning environments: policy and planning including M&E policies. These closely align with the emphasis placed on quality and equity by the Education 2030 Agenda. This is the first policy review in the GRULAC region; St Kitts and Nevis continues to spearhead policy reform and provide an exemplary model for the Caribbean region and beyond.
This report focuses on four priority areas to prepare students from all backgrounds in Thailand for a fast-changing world: set clear, common standards for all students through an improved curriculum; build capacity to reliably assess students across all competencies needed for success in life and in learning; develop a holistic strategy to prepare teachers and school leaders to deliver education reform, including implementing the revised curriculum, and tackling teaching shortages in deprived areas; create a comprehensive information and communications technology strategy to equip schools, teachers and students for the 21st century.
This abridged review presents a brief account of the performance of the education system in comparative perspective. It provides suggestions and consolidated recommendations for improvement at the system level in teacher development, curriculum development, assessment and examinations, as well as in areas like ICT in education and technical and vocational education. It provides useful insights for other countries based on Malaysia’s formation of high quality human resources as part of its“Vision 2020”. An updated technical annex provides a useful methodology to carry out an education policy review in the context of Education 2030.
- Reforms and policy analysis -
The Education 2030 Framework for Action places great emphasis on quality, inclusiveness and equity. Access to education remains high up in the national agenda of many countries, but the targets for education in 2030 will require governments to maximize the use of existing policy levers for change.
Over the past two years, UNESCO has been closely monitoring three of these levers:
- School leadership: Headteachers and those who have responsibility at an institutional level in schools are untapped potential which can be used to promote pedagogical change. However, in order to do so a new form of pedagogical leadership is needed;
- Evaluation: The variables and factors that optimize learning cannot be simply derived from results. Promoting quality necessitates a full system-wide approach to monitoring and evaluation that goes beyond the mere qualification of student learning outcomes;
- Governance: Governance must be reinforced as traditional governmental approaches to education face an increasing number of challenges ranging from privatization to internationalization.
The UNESCO International Symposium on Education Policies for 2030: took as its broad theme a discussion on which public policies can best help governments to reach higher levels of education quality through the use of governance, school leadership and monitoring and evaluation.