We are delighted to announce that the Education Outcomes Fund (EOF) has become an independent trust fund under the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). This is a major milestone in our growth and represents a widespread commitment to using outcomes approaches in tackling the global learning crisis.
To help us achieve our goal of improving learning outcomes for more than 10 million children and young people globally, we are also expanding our operations in Africa and the Middle East to become a global fund.
Using the UN platform, we will work to galvanize the global community to support outcomes-based programs as one of the solutions to the learning crisis, which has been made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In announcing EOF’s move to UNICEF, our CEO Dr. Amel Karboul explained why new approaches, such as distance learning, remedial learning, and ed-tech, are urgently needed to reach children in and out of school.
“Outcomes funding is a powerful mechanism to instill accountability and create measurable change in education. As COVID-19 poses unprecedented challenges for already strained education systems, getting the most out of education budgets becomes even more important to help keep children learning.”
EOF’s approach empowers education providers to innovate, adapt, and respond to children’s needs so that they can deliver results. Introducing outcomes funding into education, where funders only pay for measurable results once they have been achieved, also increases financial and operational accountability for governments and for education providers, ensuring that funding is only spent on interventions that work.
As Robert Jenkins, UNICEF Global Chief of Education said in announcing EOF’s move to become a trust fund hosted by the organization:
“The pandemic has upended the education of millions of children and made a global learning crisis even worse. Innovative investment in children’s learning now is critical to safeguarding their future and the future of their communities and countries.”
By working on an outcomes basis, the program design allows education providers the flexibility to decide how to meet defined learning outcomes, such as improved literacy rates for girls or the inclusion of out-of-school children into mainstream education. EOF places particular emphasis on marginalized children, such as girls, rural populations, children with disabilities and refugees.
EOF Executive Committee Chair Sir Ronald Cohen said: “There is no more powerful lever for social and economic progress than education. By using new approaches that bring together philanthropists, investors, education providers and governments to improve public education, we can realistically transform hundreds of millions of lives and help build fairer and more prosperous societies.”
We are looking forward to working closely with the UNICEF team in the months and years ahead, as we work to scale our impact around the world.
We are also excited to officially welcome Christos Stylianides, former EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, Henrietta Fore, Executive Director of UNICEF, and Vikas Pota, former CEO and Chairman of the Varkey Foundation & former Group CEO for Tmrw Digital to our High-Level Steering Group; and Dolika Banda, Non-Executive Director, CDC Group & former CEO, the African Risk Capacity Insurance Company Limited (ARC Ltd), George K. Werner, former Minister of Education in Liberia, and Robert Jenkins, Chief, Education and Associate Director, Programme Division, UNICEF, to our Executive Committee.
These developments place us at the heart of international efforts to tackle one of the most serious crises of our times. We look forward to playing our part in ensuring that every child leaves school with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed.
Our press release with further details on the announcement can be found here.