Education Financing and Support Services Project
Increase the quality and sustainability of private schools in Pakistan
- Design, implement and evaluate a model to support private education entrepreneurs
- Assess the impact of various financial products on private school performance and increase loan uptake and financing opportunities for private schools
- Assess the impact of the accessibility of Education Support Services on private schools performance and increase the adoption of quality based services
Center for Economic Research in Pakistan has partnered with Tameer Microfinance bank and the Aman Foundation to support the private education sector in Punjab, thus making it sustainable in the long run. The project is premised on the key findings from the LEAPS Report that examined the education landscape of Punjab through panel data spanning four years (2003-2007). The report focused on key outcomes such as child learning and schooling environment in villages with private schools.
The key take-aways from the LEAPS Report suggest:
Private schools are affordable-Total cost of education provision is half that of public schools. Teachers with same profile are paid 3-4 times more in public schools
- Private schools are of a relatively higher quality-Students in private schools are 1.5-2.5 years ahead in learning. However, in spite of these advantages, private schools face significant market failures that are limiting their growth and performance:
- Lack of access to finance-Private school owners fund 95% of the operations through income that varies from month to month. Majority of school owners have also reported investment as their top obstacle to growth
- Lack of access to services for enabling learning quality improvements- Quality levels of private schools are low in absolute terms. Also, increased competition results in dropped fees, not increased quality
In light of this information, researchers at CERP have partnered with Tameer Microfinance bank, Oxford University Press, Adult Basic Education Society, TeleTaleem and Aman Foundation to design, implement and evaluate a model to support the private education sector.
Using a Randomized Control Trial design, the following interventions are being implemented:
- A randomly selected sample of 350 schools to receive a cash grant of PKR. 50,000 (Completed)
- A different sample (1200) of schools to be selected to receive a loan product (On-going)
- A different sample (900) of schools to be selected to receive information about Education Support Services and Products (On-going)
From the results of the intervention, CERP plans to gauge the impact of grants, loans and equities on school revenues thus enabling them to make an evidence based decision for developing viable financial products for the private school market. Also, to analyze the impact and take up of accessible Education Support Services products and developing a market apparatus for the low cost private school market.