The World Bank recently announced that its board of executives has given a nod to a new project worth around $500 million to boost the governance of government schools across six Indian states and improve the overall learning outcome. The project STARS (Strengthening Teaching-Learning and Results for States Program), will be implemented through the flagship central scheme Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan.
“STARS will help improve learning assessment systems, strengthen classroom instruction and remediation, facilitate school-to-work transition and strengthen governance and decentralised management,” said the World Bank in a statement. The program has been initiated based on the partnership between India and the Bank since 1994, the goal of which was to strengthen public school education and boost India’s mission of bringing quality education to all. The bank had earlier provided financial assistance of over $3 billion for the country’s ‘Education for all’ goal.
The government has made significant strides in improving the accessibility of education across the country and the number of children going to school has drastically increased as well. However, the learning outcomes still remain below par. Recognising this, India has already been adopting ways to address this challenge to meet the demands of work force in the market. STARS will serve as the driving force in strengthening the implementation at the local level by investing in teacher capacity and bringing about equitable education. It will support India’s renewed focus on tackling the ‘learning outcome’ challenge and improve the employability of students.
“The program will support individualised, needs-based training for teachers that will give them an opportunity to have a say in shaping training programs and making them relevant to their teaching needs,” said the Bank in the statement. In addition to these, the World Bank will also focus on improving delivery of education at the state, district and sub district levels by providing customised local-level solutions towards school improvement.