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Consultancy Terms of Reference

 

Facilitation of a Technical Workshop and Community of Practice in Confronting the Data Challenge: Strengthening Our Systems for Innovative Data Usage and Management

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1. Background

Countries in Sub-Saharan African (SSA) are confronted with the formidable challenge of realizing quality, inclusive and equitable education for social transformation and development. This vision is anchored in several frameworks and vision statements, including the SDG 4 – Education 2030 Framework for Action[1] and the Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA) 2016–2025[2], as well as other global, regional and national frameworks.

The Knowledge and Information Exchange (KIX) Hub has been established through the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and with funding from IDRC to collect, generate, exchange and facilitate effective use of data, knowledge and innovation for education policy formulation and implementation among 19 African countries in East, West and South Africa in six thematic areas. These will include (i) strengthening learning assessment systems, (ii) improving teaching and learning, (iii) strengthening early childhood care and education, (iv) achieving gender equality in and through education, (v) leaving no one behind, and (vi) meeting the data challenge in education.


The specific objectives of the regional KIX Africa 19 Hub are to:

  • Establish and manage the regional KIX Africa 19 Hub with an emphasis on GPE member state engagement, continuous learning and adaptive management;
  • Synthesize knowledge and set regional knowledge and innovation agendas for education policy formulation and implementation in support of realising quality, inclusive and equitable education through incorporation of gender responsive approaches; and
  • Support knowledge sharing and mobilization along cross cutting themes and innovation agendas throughout the project cycle in order to facilitate monitoring and sharing of good practices across the member states.

The KIX Africa 19 Hub is expected to provide a timely opportunity to catalyse the provision of quality education through facilitating evidence-based developments in policy and practice, fostering equitable partnerships and through identifying and contextualizing evidence in education agendas unique to the region

 

2. Purpose of the Assignment

In view of strengthening the Ministry of Education systems for innovative data usage and management, a technical workshop and community of practice learning series will be held for Ministry of Education EMIS officials, Regional data and assessment experts, Policy actors, and thought leaders to share their expertise, experiences, challenges, and innovations in data systems and EMIS in order to improve their learning of the domain and extract policy ideas to be adopted.

 

3. Specific Objectives for the technical workshop and community of practice learning series

The learning series, more specifically, intend to achieve the following objectives:

  • To initiate and sustain a community network of practice, learning, and research made up of stakeholders from member states who are collectively strengthening their capacities to address the challenge of data in their contexts;
  • To grow institutional capacity to devise and implement policies for the mainstreaming and management of data in education;
  • To generate and exchange regional knowledge, data, evidence, and practices, with an emphasis on new learning;

 

 4. Target group for the technical workshop and community of practice learning series

The Institutions to participate in this meeting will include representatives from the Ministry of Education EMIS officials, Regional data and assessment experts, Policy actors, and thought leaders from the countries of the KIX Africa 19 Hub.

 

5. Scope of Work

A consulting firm or consultant sought to facilitate this workshop will work in collaboration with the African Union Commission and KIX Africa19 Hub secretariat to undertake the following tasks:

 

Task 1: Lead the preparation and moderation of an online technical workshop and community of practice learning series to take place in the month of May 2021. Specific tasks will include;

  • Undertake a quick document review of the key concepts, best practices, data challenges, evidence, and practices on Education Management Information system with an emphasis of identifying learning opportunities and innovative practices;
  • Develop a clear program and training guide for the online technical workshop and community of practice learning series which will focus on the following thematic areas and sessions;
    • Session 1, May 11th: Developing national EMIS and learning assessment systems
    • Session 2, May 18th: Applying national, regional and international learning assessment data in EMIS and school reforms
    • Session 3, May 25th: Developing and implementing appropriate feedback mechanisms for schools following data analysis and EMIS reporting requirements

 

Task 2: Ensure that participants analyze national level good practices, available tools, and relevant research in the thematic areas for purposes of developing clear action plans

  • Administer a self- assessment tool or self-diagnostic process in order to identify areas for strengthening evidence based national EMIS and learning assessment systems;
  • Guide participants into the development of innovative strategies to address gaps in developing and implementing national EMIS and learning assessment systems
  • Facilitate Knowledge Sharing, networking and learning exchange among countries using collaborative tools for networking;
  • Guide participants into developing clear action plans and innovative strategies to accelerate education progress for Innovative Data Usage and Management at the national and school level;
  • Document and prepare a workshop report

 

6. Expected deliverables at the end of the assignment

The following validated deliverables will be expected:

  • Capacities enhanced to devise and implement policies for the mainstreaming and management of data in education;
  • A community network of practice, learning, and research established with stakeholders to collectively strengthening their capacities to address the challenge of data in their contexts;
  • Entry points and opportunities identified for developing clear action plans and innovative strategies to accelerate education progress for Innovative Data Usage and Management at the national and school level; and
  • A Workshop report with a clear road map for taking forward the key lessons learnt.

 

7. Time frame

The training workshop and community of practice learning series will be undertaken in 3 working days. The whole assignment will however commence on 10th May 2021 and ending 26th May 2021. The consultant/consulting agency will be hired during this period and the schedule below sets out the expected deliverables and indicative dates;

Task

Key deliverable submitted for approval 

Indicative days

Development of an inception report for the assignment

Inception report development

2 days

Workshop Advance preparation

To prepare for the workshop 

5 days

Hold the technical workshop 

Facilitating the following sessions;

Session 1, May 11th: Developing national EMIS and learning assessment systems

Session 2, May 18th: Applying national, regional and international learning assessment data in EMIS and school reforms

Session 3, May 25th: Developing and implementing appropriate feedback mechanisms for schools following data analysis and EMIS reporting requirements

3 days

Prepare and submit a workshop report

A Workshop report with a clear road map for taking forward the key lessons learnt.

2 days

 

Total Number of Workings Days

12 days

 

8. Key technical skills

The Consultancy Firm should have candidates is expected with the following qualifications and skills;

  • Advanced academic degree in a related field (preferably education, Statics, Mathematics, Education development, Education Planning).
  • Extensive professional knowledge and at least 10 years’ experience in the field of establishing and designing EMIS systems will be an added advantage.
  • Demonstrated experience in regional review of evidence, literature reviews, stakeholder consultations, analysis and synthesis of findings; excellent writing and communication skills.
  • Prior experience with UN Education programs, the KIX Hubs, as well as the African Union Agenda 2063 and CESA 2016-2025 and global educational agenda including would be an asset.

 

9. Procedures and deadline for submitting concept papers and institutional Profiles

Those wishing to be considered for this consultancy should submit their concept papers, Institutional profiles and CVs This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to and copy This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . All documents should have been submitted by 30th April 2021.

 

[1] UNESCO is the only United Nations agency with a mandate to cover all aspects of education. It has been entrusted to lead the Global Education 2030 Agenda through Sustainable Development Goal 4. The roadmap to achieve this is the Education 2030 Framework for Action. http://uis.unesco.org/sites/default/files/documents/education-2030-incheon-framework-for-action-implementation-of-sdg4-2016-en_2.pdf

[2] http://www.education2030-africa.org/images/systeme_edu/docs/Final_Indicators_Manual.compressed.pdf

The Pan African University is pleased to announce the launching of the Call for Scholarships applications for the 2020-2021 academic year.

This Call will run from 10 July to 20 September 2020.

Apply for the Scholarships here www.au-pau.org/submission.

 

Since 11 March 2020 when WHO declared a global COVID-19 pandemic, AU Member States have taken steps to suppress and control the spread of the Coronavirus in Africa, including closing of schools. While school closures are important in mitigating the spread of COVI D-19, prolonged closures negatively impact all students and disproportionately affect the most deprived and vulnerable students. Schools closure however does not mean children should not continue to learn. This means creating opportunities for learning at home and we need to act fast to limit the negative consequences of COVID-19 on Africa's education systems as follows: 

 

1. Ensure continuity of learning based on DOTSS approach

Implement an immediate response to support continuity of learning based on the DOTSS approach endorsed by the 3rd Specialized Technical Committee on Education, Science, Technology and Innovation:

  • Digital connectivity of schools: Advocate for schools and other learning institutions to be connected to the internet and to become hubs for providing internet access in deprived communities.
  • Online learning: Provide distance learning content, deploying radio, TV, podcast and online/e-learning.
  • Teachers as facilitators and motivators of learning: Teachers should deploy relevant technologies such as webinars, to continue to engage and motivate learners to learn. All Ministries to provide guidelines and support to parents for home schooling.
  • Safety online and offline. As more children use the internet for learning, they become increasingly vulnerable to online sexual exploitation and abuse. Ministries should provide guidelines and tools for online safety.
  • Skills focused learning. The curriculum should embrace the 360 degrees approach to skills development combining foundational, digital, 21 st century, entrepreneurial and job specific skills.

2. Monitor, learn and improve

Ministries of Education should document good practices and monitor learning engagement and learning outcomes to improve the education sector response to COVID-19. They should also share information on education responses and successes and challenges with the AUC to facilitate inter-country learning and replication of good practices.

3. Plan for re-opening

Ministries of Education should put in place plans to re-open schools, launch back-to-school campaigns when appropriate, and implement education strategies to catch-up on the lost period of learning.

 

Unless the above actions are taken with speed and at scale, national efforts to improve education and learning will stagnate or will be undermined. The impact will be felt at all levels from individual children and families losing hope in the promise of education to member states experiencing a loss in human capital and diminished economic opportunities.

Please find attached for reference UNICEF, WHO and IFRC guidelines for the prevention and control of COVID-19 in schools.

 

Let us work together to ensure uninterrupted learning for all during this trying time. UNICEF Country Offices are available to support you in your response to COVID-19.

The Intra-Africa Academic Mobility Scheme is a collaborative initiative under the Joint AU-EU Strategy for Higher Education. The Scheme is managed by the Executive Agency of the European Commission in collaboration with African Union Commission. The overall objective of the programme is to enhance human capital development in Africa, while strengthening intra-African collaboration as called for by Agenda 2063.