First working paper on RISE Indonesia published

A research project which analyses how policies can improve student learning in Indonesia has reached an important milestone: the first working paper has been published.

The Research on Improving Systems of Education (RISE) Indonesia research project focuses on how teacher reforms can improve learning in a decentralized setting. Despite increasing government investment in education reform, Indonesian students perform poorly compared to the country’s regional neighbors with respect to learning.

The first working paper, Indonesia Got Schooled: 15 Years of Rising Enrolment and Flat Learning Profiles developed and evaluated learning profiles using data from the Indonesian Family Life Surveys (IFLS). The findings demonstrated that while Indonesia succeeded in achieving high levels of school enrolment and attainment, there’s a large gap between students’ mathematical ability and what they are supposed to know, based on the education curriculum.

The paper also highlights that students are learning little as they are promoted from grade to grade.

“The findings are significant because although they are based on a relatively small set of data, they show us that the pace of student learning is incredibly slow across the Indonesian school system and reiterate the importance of evaluating the school systems with a goal of improving learning for students,” said Prof. Menno Pradhan, AIGHD academic staff and lead researcher for RISE Indonesia.

AIGHD is collaborating with SMERU Research Institute and Mathematica Policy Research on the five-year long initiative. The next step for the project team is to better understand what hinders learning and how it can by improved by evaluating education policies at the national and the district level.

RISE is a large scale, multi-country research program that seeks to understand how school systems in the developing world can overcome the learning crisis and deliver better learning for all. Six countries are part of the program including Ethiopia, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Tanzania and Vietnam. The project is funded by DIFD and DFAT.

For more information on the RISE Indonesia project, visit our project page.