Why this approach
Why do we need a new approach?
A range of actors play an important role in addressing the global learning crisis. But too often, the way we fund education organizations is fragmented, restrictive, and not aligned to the national agenda
Our beliefs that underpin
We face an urgent global learning crisis, that is most severe in the Middle East and Africa
In the Middle East and North Africa, only half of children and youth reach minimum proficiency in reading and math, and in Sub-Saharan Africa the figure is less than 20%. Without significantly more and better funding, by 2030, 1 billion children worldwide will be denied basic skills, posing a major threat to global prosperity and security.
Governments must be stewards of the national education system and non-state actors can provide valuable support
Government must take the lead in delivering and financing inclusive, quality education for all. Their commitment to reform and appropriate spending will be the single biggest determinant of quality education at scale. However, when aligned with government policy and properly regulated, non-state education organizations can bring much-needed innovation, agility, and capacity to the education sector, both in the provision of ancillary services and core delivery of education.
How we pay for things matters – and the status quo is broken
The system of financing can be a major determinant of its overall impact. Funding and programming for non-state actors today are often highly fragmented. Restrictive grants prevent social entrepreneurs from adapting to conditions on the ground. Donors lack transparency into what interventions work best and their relative cost-effectiveness. This system of funding is too often holding back the results we can and must achieve.
Outcomes funds offer a better way of delivering results
For many (but not all) types of impact, outcomes funds can ensure that scarce public and philanthropic funds are only used for programs that achieve the desired results. They align incentives around results, ensure transparency and accountability, coordinate fragmented efforts, and empower organizations to continuously improve through data-driven adaptive management that responds to each local context.
A better way of funding
non-state actors in conjunction with government
This approach will be a platform for donors to work together to support long-term, systemic impact, in conjuction with governments – ultimately driving better outcomes at better value
Better outcomes better value
Strengthening the existing financing architecture
EOF aims to fill a clear gap in the existing architecture, providing multilateral, results-based finance primarily to non-state actors. EOF will work in coordination with The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and other funding bodies, to ensure a coherent and unified financing framework
Filling a gap in the current financing architecture for education
Over the past decade, the financial architecture for education has seen a much-needed growth in the scope of financing mechanisms. Most notable entrants include:
The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) mobilizes finances from public and private sources around the world to fund governments, encouraging developing country partners to increase their domestic financing for basic education
Education Cannot Wait brings together governments, humanitarian actors, and development efforts to rapidly respond to the educational needs of children and youth affected by crises
The International Finance Facility for Education (IFFEd), currently being launched, will create an attractive, low-interest financing mechanism for governments of lower-middle-income countries, through partnerships with the Multilateral Development Banks and donors
However, there are a number of clear gaps in the existing financing architecture:
Fragmentation of funding for non-state actors, from both donor agencies and philanthropy
Inconsistent alignment of funding for non-state actors to government priorities
Significant funding for non-state actors into programs that lack transparency and accountability, and / or do not demonstrate the desired results
Fragmented efforts to develop impact bonds leads to inefficiency in their design and execution
EOF will aim to address these gaps, providing multilateral, results-based finance primarily to non-state actors, reducing fragmentation, increasing the effectiveness of how they are funded, ensuring consistent alignment to government priorities, and improving the efficient use of results-based finance.
Alignment with other initiatives
EOF will closely integrate with existing initiatives, ensuring a coordinated approach and strategy for both donors and developing country partners. This includes but is not limited to:
Coordinating closely with GPE and other development agencies on the development of EOF’s objectives with developing country partners, building on GPE-supported Education Sector Plans and the GPE Private Sector Strategy
Partnering with existing Local Education Groups (LEGs) for in-country stakeholder engagement
Institutional sharing of expertise and ‘what works’ in education, complimenting the GPE Knowledge and Innovation Exchange and creating pathways for government policy adoption