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Education Planning Methodology and Tools

This theme and three sub-themes concern the overall planning process, from policy setting to planning to plan implementation. 

To ensure education sector priorities and reforms are implemented, countries need to cast their policies in their long-term and medium-term development plans, and undertake thorough financial planning for the implementation of education policies.  This will ensure a sound alignment of education plans with national budgeting and expenditure planning processes.

However, in practice, education planners and policy makers are often unable to link education plans explicitly with the public sector finance planning and budgeting process. In some cases, the countries simply apply an inappropriate strategy for financing their education plans thus failing to ensure adequate public resource allocation for the education sector policy implementation.

The generally accepted measures for overcoming this problem are numerous and typically rest with using the medium-term planning process and plan documents as the bridge. Using this approach, policies as laid down in the long-term strategies and plans, are integrated into a country wide medium-term macro economic context. They are translated into public expenditure programmes within a coherent multi-year fiscal framework/annual budgets. Such an approach is seen as a way for better service provision, more efficient use of resources, and greater accountability for policy implementation.

However, many governments face significant challenges trying to improve planning, budgeting, and ensuring links between education policy and the two process areas. Typically, the challenges arise from the need to establish clear and well informed policies; identify and assess resource requirements for policy implementation; ensure that budgets reflect those policies, and that spending is in line with allocations; and the need to measure results which feed back into the policymaking process.

In this regard, Education Policy, Planning and Budgeting specifically seeks to answer the questions pertaining to the following:

Methodologies for Education Planning
This deals with methodologies for education planning at the national and sub-national levels. Approaches to education planning include strategic planning, long-term planning, medium-term planning, budget planning, and implementation planning.

Simulation and Projection Models
This deals with simulation and projection models and presents a link to UNESCO PORTAL. Handbook for Decentralized Education Planning is the core resource which gives a good understanding of the topic. The EFA Planning Guide is another core resource.