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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.


Penrose, Perran. 1993. Planning and Financing Sustainable Education Systems in Sub-Saharan Africa – Education, Research Paper No. 07. London, DFID.

The paper sets out briefly some of the basic issues facing education policy makers in Africa, including the introduction of school fees and the private provision of schools. It highlights that in the early 1990s, there was insufficient attention paid to how policy advice was implemented, and that one of the weakest link in the chain of policy implementation was the relation between planning and budgeting, including how budgets were made. There was a tendency to put broad educational policy objectives on the one hand and the economic planning and management of resources on the other into two separate compartments, so that while there was no shortage of analysis of what needs to be done, the means of achieving given objectives were often unspecified. The paper then details the approaches to strengthening and/or reforming the planning and budgeting for education in African countries. These involve the full or partial replacement of annual incremental planning and budgeting systems with approaches which may be more appropriate to current problems. The objective of the changes suggested in this paper is to enable countries to use their limited resources better and avoid stop-go educational development policies in order to achieve the capability of providing an education service which is both sustainable and affordable. In this respect governments have a crucial role to play in the process of change, even if in some aspects the 'market' will succeed where government planning has failed. (From the summary in the publication)

UNESCO. 2007. Training Materials on “Education Decentralization in the Context of Public Sector Management Reform in the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS)” delivered by the Mekong Institute and UNESCO in 2007. Bangkok, UNESCO.

The Mekong Institute and UNESCO Bangkok ran a three-week intensive course on Education Decentralization in the Context of Public Sector Management Reform in the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS), from 12 February to 2 March 2007 at the Mekong Institute in Khon Kaen, Thailand, with representatives from Cambodia, China (Yunan), Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, and Viet Nam. The course focused on: (i) coordination of the implementation of parallel education sector programmes and plans such as the EFA and MDGs, Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP), national socio-economic development plans; and (ii) new management approaches such as medium-term finance planning (MTEF), sector-wide approach (SWAp), programme-based planning (PBP), and results-based planning (RBP). Through the link provided above, readers may access all the training materials.

UNESCO. 2005. Handbook for Decentralized Education Planning. Bangkok, UNESCO.

The Handbook enables education planning staff and decision makers in Ministries of Education and in provincial education administrations to expand the capacity needed to develop and apply consistent, sustainable education planning and implementation monitoring at both the central and provincial levels. The Handbook provides technical information of an innovative kind concerning modern planning concepts and the use of IT-based planning tools.

  UNESCO. 2001. EFA Planning Guide: Southeast and East Asia. Bangkok, UNESCO.

The EFA Planning Guide is designed as a working tool for educational planners, statisticians and members of national EFA task forces in charge of preparing the EFA plan. The Guide provides practical, “how to” advice to educational practitioners working at sub-national levels who have planning functions or, amongst other assignments, carry out planning tasks in their everyday work.

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