Education

RESEP education research has a strong emphasis on empirical research in a broad range of policy-related issues including teacher knowledge and training, early-childhood outcomes, accountability, socioeconomic status, and school effectiveness. Policy application is one of the central aims of the research.

Reports & Policy Briefs: Education

Learner flows through schools: Using high quality administrative data to understand education system performance

The report analyses school flows, repetition, and dropout using a novel analysis of school-based assessments, and how well these predict future performance and learner flows. An important finding is that the high repetition and dropout rates in high schools imply an internal efficiency rate of only 49% (measured in terms of the years of enrolment in high school for every matric pass).

September 17, 2021 By: Servaas van der Berg, Chris van Wyk, Rebecca Selkirk, and Heleen Hofmeyr PDF

Using international comparisons to inform debates on salaries for publicly paid educators in South Africa

This brief replicates UNESCO’s calculations, to determine whether South African teachers’ wages are comparable with those in Denmark. The level of teacher wages so determined was only USD71, which is similar to Japan and Italy, but even this seems unrealistically high. UNESCO uses purchasing power parity (PPP) exchange rates for converting teacher pay across countries to dollars – this is where the problem might be. As an alternative strategy to assess the adequacy of teacher pay in international comparison, we use teacher household assets instead of compensation as a proxy for teacher living standards. This results in findings which are considered to be plausible, as South Africa is then comparable with developing countries such as Botswana, Malaysia and Philippines.

October 1, 2020 By: Tsekere Maponya PDF

COVID-19 and basic education: Evaluating the initial impact of the return to schooling

This paper describes the partial return to school that occurred during June and July, drawing mainly on the second wave of the NIDSCRAM survey. To what extent was there alignment between the grades that were gazetted to return in June and July and actual school attendance rates by children across the grades? How worried were parents and guardians about sending their children back to school and how did this vary across society?

September 12, 2020 By: Debra Shepherd, Nompumelelo Mohohlwane, Stephen Taylor PDF

A Sector Hanging in the Balance: ECD and Lockdown in South Africa

New evidence suggests that over four months after the closure of early childhood development (ECD) programmes on 18 March 2020, the ECD sector is likely to be operating at less than a quarter of its pre-lockdown levels. Of the 38% of respondents from the new NIDS-CRAM survey reporting that children aged 0-6 in their households had attended ECD programmes before the lockdown in March, only 12% indicated that children had returned to these programmes by mid-July, well after programmes were allowed to reopen

August 12, 2020 By: Gabrielle Wills, Janeli Kotze, Jesal Kika-Mistry PDF