Schooling Projects

Evaluation of Safe and Caring Child-Friendly Schools Programme. In 2010, the CEPD, together with Paul Musker and Associates, was contracted by Unicef to carry out an evaluation of one of its prime programmes, the Safe and Caring Child-Friendly Schools (SCCFS) Programme, in the Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo. The evaluation seeks to assess the following:

  • The relevance of the programme - why it was needed.
  • The effectiveness of the programme - were the intended results achieved?
  • The operational efficiency of the programme - could the programme have achieved better results for the same cost, or similar results at a lower cost?
  • Programme outcomes.
  • Programme sustainability and potential for replication.

The contract also involves the development of an investment plan for the period 2011 to 2015.

Grade R diagnostic study. In 2008, the CEPD was contracted by the Technical Assistance Unit of the National Treasury to conduct a diagnostic study to help guide and strengthen the national, provincial and district capacity to achieve the 2010 Grade R expansion targets. The findings are intended to inform the Department of Education as well as the Cabinet cluster responsible for ECD on the viability of current Grade R expansion plans and the implications for the 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 national and provincial targets. Specifically, the CEPD was asked to:

  • Conduct research into the state of readiness of the DoE, provincial education departments, districts and schools to provide universal access to quality Grade R (Reception year, age 5-6 years) education from 2010.
  • Develop an options paper on possible approaches to improving implementation, and ensuring readiness by 2010.
  • Develop a diagnostic report setting out the key challenges faced at different levels of the system, and in different geographical areas, in implementing national policy, including recommendations on interventions during 2009 and 2010.

Evaluation of Education Support Centres Project in the North-West Province. The CEPD was contracted by the Zenex Foundation to evaluate a project undertaken by the Media in Education Trust (MIET) to provide training to teachers in 20 schools and establish education support centres in the North West province. The evaluation team included CEPD, JET, J Roberts Consulting Services and Charles Simpkins of the Economics Department at Wits University. The second phase of the evaluation was completed in 2008.

No-fee schools in KwaZulu-Natal. The CEPD was commissioned by the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education to conduct a study on the impact of no-fee schools in the province. This was carried out by CEPD researchers with the assistance of academics at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Access to schooling (CREATE Project). The CEPD has participated in this large international project on access to schooling, assisting in the development of a South African Country Assessment report as well as conducting fieldwork. The project is a four-country study funded by the UK Department for International Development (DfID), led by Sussex University internationally and the Education Policy Unit at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa.

Early Childhood Development (ECD) strategy for Gauteng. The CEPD, in partnership with Paul Musker and Associates and Mzabalazo Advisory Services, developed an ECD Strategy for the Gauteng Department of Education.

HIV/AIDS life skills evaluation for Gauteng Department of Education. The CEPD led a consortium to conduct an evaluation of the special (conditional grant) programme on the HIV/AIDS Life Skills programme in schools in Gauteng.

School transport studies. CEPD and a private transport consultancy, Namela Projects, provided services to both the Department of Education and the Department of Transport to develop national policy documents for school transport for learners and teachers.

North West Education Department submission. The CEPD prepared for the North West Department of Education a departmental submission to the provincial Economic Advisory Council, identifying specific, costed interventions planned by the Department for the short, medium and long-term.

Research for Oprah Winfrey Foundation. The CEPD was contracted to assist in a research project conducted by the Oprah Winfrey Foundation for the benefit of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy (OWLA). The broad aims of the project were to provide an understanding of the education communities around the OWLA, to explore possible areas of collaboration between surrounding schools and OWLA, and to extend the recruitment base beyond the original feeder schools.

For information on other schooling projects undertaken by the CEPD, please refer to our annual reports: www.cepd.org.za/