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Principal Investigator: Dr Elisabetta Aurino

Funder: The British Academy

Duration: Ongoing (began November 2019)

Summary

Experimental evidence that investments in early childhood education (ECE) promote sustained gains for children’s development into primary school is growing, yet no studies exist in sub-Saharan Africa. The Quality Preschool for Ghana programme is the first longitudinal trial of ECE-quality-improvement interventions in sub-Saharan Africa. This programme evaluated impacts of in-service training and coaching for kindergarten teachers implemented in 2015-16. It improved ECE quality, and children’s cognitive and social-emotional skills. Sustained impacts at 6-7 and 7-8 years-of-age were shown by follow-up studies. By continuing long-standing collaborations with Ghanaian stakeholders, this project seeks to examine impacts in middle-childhood (grades 3-4), providing the first-ever experimental evidence of longer-term impacts of quality ECE on academic and non-academic outcomes in sub-Saharan Africa. The project also includes modules on household food security and child nutrition to investigate how those and primary school environments moderate sustained gains, and the cost-effectiveness of such an intervention.

Research Team: Dr Elisabetta Aurino, Imperial College London; Professor Sharon Wolf, University of Pennsylvania; Dr Pearl Kyei, University of Ghana; Professor Jere Behrman, University of Pennsylvania; Professor J. Lawrence Aber, New York University; Ms Madeleen Husselman, IPA Ghana