Learning, How We Would Have Missed (Measuring) You - Global Education Community Shows Support for Early Learning Indicator

Measuring progress in education is no simple matter. With the shift from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, the global community put new emphasis on improving the quality of education rather than only tackling access to education. Accordingly, SDG 4 captures learning outcomes, including foundational literacy and numeracy.

Target 4.1 frames the overall goal:

Achieving Learning for All Requires Measuring Basic Skills Early and Often; Proposed Changes to the SDG Indicators Would Make This Kind of Measurement Less Common

Proposed changes to the Sustainable Development Goals’ education indicators would shift the focus away from early mastery of basic skills. Learning in the early years is critical for achieving later learning—evidence is increasingly showing that children who fall behind in early primary school rarely catch up. To achieve SDG 4 of quality education for all, we must know what children are learning (or not) early in the primary cycle.

Three Years after SDG Adoption: It's Time for Action on Learning Data

“Do kids in developing countries need less reading and math skills than OECD Kids?” This question did not appear on the agenda at a three-day workshop recently organized by USAID. It was not even articulated. But the entire event—rather opaquely titled: “Linking Assessments to a Global Standard with Social Moderation”—was predicated on the assumption that some new global standards were needed because the definitions of basic reading and math skills used by the OECD are too unattainable for many/most developing countries. If that sounds horribly retrograde and paternalistic, it is.