Education Development Trust are one of UKFIET’s member organisations. This article, published on their website, showcases a series of evidence reports recently published for the DFID-funded EdTech Hub and K4D programmes. It also outlines their approach to pivoting their high speed research support during these times of a global pandemic, when more evidence is needed.

Education system leaders are having to make high-stakes decisions in the face of great uncertainty. We are already providing rapid evidence briefings on a range of urgent priorities, and can offer fast-turnaround research to support evidence-based policymaking across a variety of contexts.

A good deal of evidence exists on what works in remote schooling – and new lessons are already being generated from recent Covid-19 responses. Drawing on the latest international learnings and synthesis of existing evidence, we have recently completed eight rapid-turnaround reports for the EdTech Hub on:

Our consultants have also completed rapid evidence summaries for the K4D Helpdesk on the secondary impacts of Covid-19 for women and girls in Sub-Saharan Africa, the impact of girls’ life skills interventions in emergencies, and remote life skills interventions for disadvantaged girls.

We have a dedicated research team with a 20-year track record of producing rapid, practitioner-focussed research with international donors and ministries of education. We draw on our in-house research expertise and a network of international partners and experts – including university associates – to offer a variety of research-based services. These include rapid desk research and evidence reviews, meta-analyses and policy briefings, with tailored outputs for the needs of specific countries, regions and audiences.

We are pivoting some strands of research within our largest programmes to meet the need for immediate evidence in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. In Rwanda and Ethiopia, we are studying the level of technological capability available to learners and teachers. In Ethiopia, we are tracking and studying the impact of Covid-19 on the education system, with a particular focus on the most marginalised and emerging regions. In Rwanda, we are developing a new study to generate evidence that can support the delivery of radio broadcast education. We are supporting others to pivot their research and be innovative in their methodologies and approaches to ensure that research does not stall in the face of adversity.

We are rethinking the landscape of careers and employability and collating evidence on how we need to adapt provision to suit the economic climate as the crisis abates.

At the direct request of governments, we are collating evidence and providing guidance on important topics. In addition to producing quality guidance on best practice and pedagogy for remote teaching, we are using the best available evidence to help inform policy and strategic responses to the crisis and plan for the long-term recovery. We are also examining evidence and learning from past experience on how to mitigate the negative impact of health crises on education provision.

We want to generate specific evidence that will support the provision of education for the most vulnerable around the world – especially girls, children with disabilities, pastoralists and refugees. We are keen to work with partners to drive forward new and essential research programmes in these areas.