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Implementation Completion Report (ICR) Review - Basic Education, Phase I


  
1. Project Data:   
ICR Review Date Posted:
01/14/2013   
Country:
Uzbekistan
PROJ ID:
P094042
Appraisal
Actual
Project Name:
Basic Education, Phase I
Project Costs(US $M)
 $15. 12  $13. 21
L/C Number:
C4240
Loan/Credit (US $M)
 $15.00  13. 21
Sector Board:
Education
Cofinancing (US $M)
   
Cofinanciers:
Board Approval Date
  10/26/2006
 
 
Closing Date
06/30/2008 02/28/2011
Sector(s):
Primary education (35%), Secondary education (35%), Pre-primary education (25%), General public administration sector (5%)
Theme(s):
Education for all (40% - P) Rural services and infrastructure (20% - S) Participation and civic engagement (20% - S) Decentralization (20% - S)
         
Prepared by: Reviewed by: ICR Review Coordinator: Group:
Susan Ann Caceres
George T. K. Pitman Soniya Carvalho IEGPS1

2. Project Objectives and Components:

a. Objectives:
The project is the first phase of a two-phase, four-year Adaptable Program Lending (APL) whose overall objective is “to support Uzbekistan's efforts to improve effectiveness of teaching in general secondary education and pre-schools in order to provide students with the new knowledge and skills required in the contemporary global economy."


    The Project Development Objective of this first-phase project (PAD, p.2) is to:
        “Improve learning conditions in pre-school and the first four grades of general secondary education”.

    The Financing Agreement (p. 5) states that the objectives are to:
        "improve (1) the efficiency of teaching and learning in general secondary schools and preschools of participating regions through provision of new teaching and learning materials, improving teaching practices, and activation of school boards activities; (2) the efficiency of budget allocation and strengthening of budget planning and formulation in general secondary education; and (3) the capacity of the Ministry of Public Education to implement and monitor investment programs.”
    This Review uses the objectives defined in the Financing Agreement as they are more comprehensive and evaluable.

b. Were the project objectives/key associated outcome targets revised during implementation?
No

c. Components:
The project targeted 35 rayons in seven oblasts out of the 12 oblasts in the country. There were five components:

1. Provision of Learning Materials and Resources for Grades one to four of General Schools and Pre-Schools. (US$9.8 million at appraisal; actual US$6.9 million). This was to provide selected grades and schools with modern, low cost and high impact learning materials and resources. This was to be done in full alignment with the priorities and on-going activities of the School Education Development Program (2004-2009) and in coordination with education projects supported by other donors, who focused on equipping schools with teaching and learning resources, materials and aids.

2. Strengthening of In-Service Training for Teachers and Principals in General Secondary Schools and Pre-Schools. (US $3.8 million at appraisal; actual US$2.2 million). This was to increase
the capacity of the Republican Institute for the Pre-School Teacher Training and the Republican Institute for Teacher Training to provide training to a larger number of teachers in any given year by developing ability and expertise in these Institutes for conducting school based teacher training. It was also to strengthen the material capacity of rayon methodological centers and school teachers' rooms to develop and produce child centered learning materials by providing them with appropriate workstations and audiovisual equipment.

3. Support activation of School Boards. (US$0.17 million at appraisal; actual US$0.05 million). This was to strengthen and stimulate community participation in school needs assessment and prioritization for selection of learning materials with the establishment and operation of School Boards as an instrument for the implementation of the National "Oila-Mahalla-Maktab" (Family-Community-School) Concept, building on experience gained during the implementation of similar initiatives carried out under different donor supported projects (UNICEF and USAID) in support of school community mobilization. It was also to support activities related to components one.

4. Improvements in Education Finance, Budgeting Management, and Accounting. (US$0.89 million at appraisal; actual US$3.59 million). This was to support the introduction of per capita funding in Bukhara oblast during phase two of the program through laying the groundwork for expanding per capita financing in the education sector. Activities included development of an appropriate formula, the design of an implementation plan, preparation of training materials, and finalization of legal and institutional prerequisite.

5. Support for Project Management and Results Management. (US$0.44 million at appraisal; actual US$0.403 million). This was to enhance the capacity of line units of the Ministry of Public Education to coordinate and implement the Basic Education Project, and in so doing, strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Public Education and other education institutions to manage, implement, monitor, and evaluate the impact of education interventions.

d. Comments on Project Cost, Financing, Borrower Contribution, and Dates
Project Cost: Appraised cost was US$15.12 million. The final cost of the project was US$13.21 million or 87.4% of the appraised cost. According to the ICR (p. 20) disbursement was low because of implementation delays, including lengthy international competitive bidding procurement procedures, and capacity improvements made by the Ministry to implement a Bank-supported project for the first time. In addition, the US$ appreciation vis--vis the local currency, increased the total credit by the equivalent of US$1.6 million. Even so, because of the budget ceiling of US$15 million (imposed in a Presidential Decree dated January 2, 2007) the Ministry experienced difficulties absorbing and planning for the additional funds. As a result, the project closed with US$2.83 million in uncommitted resources, including US$1.8 million from canceled non-performing contracts, penalties to suppliers, and savings from effective contract negotiation. Two important contracts had to be canceled owing to the failure of suppliers to deliver prior to the credit closing date; the reallocation of more than US$1.5 million released from these contract cancellations shortly before the closing date could not be completed owing to time constraints.
Financing: The Bank provided Special Drawing Rights 10.10 million equivalent to US$15.00 million at appraisal. SDR 1.55 million was cancelled on completion and actual disbursement was US$13.20 million equivalent.

Borrower Contribution: The Borrower contributed US$ 17,000, or 14% of the US$ 118,000 planned. However, Government expanded the per capita funding beyond the one planned oblast to include all of them. The cost of this expansion (e.g. additional training) was financed by the Government with central budget resources, but it did not report the amount it incurred (ICR, p. 13).

Dates: There were three extensions of the closing date, which amounted to 32 months. The main reason was implementation delays resulting from the Borrower’s lack of understanding of World Bank procedures and the complex registration and review procedures for approval of international contracts by the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Investment and Trade (ICR. p. 12). The first extension from June 30, 2008 to December 31, 2008 was granted since "the original project period (18 months) was unrealistic and the initial implementation was delayed by three months" (ICR, p. 12). The second extension from December 31, 2009 to December 31, 2010 was granted to allow for the completion of the project activities. The final extension from December 31, 2010 to February 28, 2011 was granted to allow the Ministry to receive additional computers.


3. Relevance of Objectives & Design:

a. Relevance of Objectives:
Substantial. The Government put forward the School Education Development Program in 2004, which focuses on general education. The objectives of this project directly support the government’s Program. The objective was substantially relevant to supporting the Government’s new basic education program, which addresses the previous bias in the provision of funding for education toward specialized secondary education and includes important policy innovations such as teacher incentives and greater involvement of locally elected school boards. Project objectives contributed also towards producing general secondary graduates with relevant competencies and skills while at the same time ensuring that the education budget was managed in an efficient manner. The objective to improve the efficiency of the budget allocation in the education system was important, since public education expenditures constituted about 28% of total public expenditures in the country in 2005 and 8.9% of GDP – in contrast, in 2001 the OECD average share of public education expenditures was about half that of Uzbekistan: 12.7% of public expenditures and 5.3% of GDP (PAD, p 96).


    The project's focus on improving teaching and learning are relevant to the government's objectives and remained relevant during the course of the project. The Uzbekistan's Welfare Improvement Strategy 2007-2010 sought to improve the quality of public services, including education and highlighted the need to continue to focus on providing people access to quality education and to increase the efficiency in the use of public resources. The objectives remained relevant to the Country Assistance Strategy (2008-2011) and the Country Partnership Strategy (2012-2014) that support the education sector’s efforts to enhance quality and strengthen governance.

b. Relevance of Design:
Substantial. The two phased design of the APL was aligned with the Bank's Interim Strategy Note. This reflected the Bank's concerns that, with the fiduciary environment then prevalent in Uzbekistan, it would be difficult for the Bank's financial assistance to achieve sustainable results. Thus, the triggers in the project to move from phase 1 to phase 2 emphasized promoting communities' active participation in school decisions and strengthening the Ministry’s institutional capacity for results-based monitoring and management.

Project activities were relevant and aligned to the objectives of the project and the results framework was logical. Increasing the availability of teaching and learning materials in schools would overcome the disparities in human and material resources endowment (i.e. insufficient and outdated equipment in classrooms; a lack of modern teaching aids; and ineffective use of available teaching aides and information technologies) between urban and rural areas. Successful introduction of per-capita funding would overcome significant inequalities that ranged from 88% of average per capita spending in Namanga oblast to 134% of the average in Navoi oblast. Enhancing the capacity of teacher training institutions to introduce school-based teacher training strategies would address teachers' inability to promote active engagement by students in their own learning. Increasing community involvement in school decision-making would increase transparency and good governance. Increasing the Ministry’s capacity for better management, and developing monitoring and evaluation capacity would enable better planning and budgeting.

However, the ICR pointed out a design weakness related to the choice of the lending instrument. Using an APL to program a relatively traditional investment in a sector over two phases with a relatively short implementation period may not have been the best choice, given the 4.5 years it took to implement the planned 1.5-year first phase APL (ICR, p. 15 and 30).


4. Achievement of Objectives (Efficacy) :

During the project, other donors supported pre-school and general secondary education, including: Asian Development Bank (Education Sector Development Program and Textbook Development), UNICEF/UNESCO (Early Childhood Development, Education Management Information System), Islamic Development Bank (construction and equipping of secondary schools), and JICA (support to educational reform, and retraining teachers to expand professional education). Thus, the outputs/outcomes noted below are not solely attributable to this project.
    1. Improve the efficiency of teaching and learning in general secondary schools and preschools of participating regions: Modest.

    Outputs:
    More than 75% of schools (target 75%) participated actively in needs assessment and in the selection of learning materials. However, none of the learning materials selected by school boards were distributed to schools (ICR, p. 15).

    At least 80% of targeted classes in project schools had modern teaching and learning materials (target 80%) Over the life of the project this benefited 1,501 general secondary schools and 673 preparatory groups in 598 preschools in 35 rayons located in seven oblasts by providing them with learning materials and resources. The ICR does not indicate what proportion of all secondary, preschools and preparatory schools benefited from the project in these oblasts.

    Two resource materials on how to prepare school-based needs assessment and how to prepare request for learning materials were prepared and published and 4,600 copies were distributed among participating schools. However, the ICR (p. 15) reported that in 2010 about half of the materials for preschools were delivered or in the process of being delivered to preschools, with the remaining materials in the Tashkent warehouse awaiting delivery to oblasts and then preschools. Moreover, distribution of learning materials for grades 1 through 4, estimated at approximately 40 percent of project funds, were also delayed.

    More than 3,000 teachers, school principals, and methodologists were trained in the use of teaching materials and information technology (IT) applications. The ICR does not indicate the proportion of project teachers to all teachers. Direct beneficiaries of this training were 626,150 students in project primary and secondary schools and preschool institutions.

    The project also financed all training and promotion activities needed to involve parents and other members of the school community in the process of selection of teaching and learning materials. Based on surveys, the level of participation of school boards in school decision making was very high - 79 percent of all members of school boards (10,793 persons) took part in estimating school needs and prioritizing them for inclusion in school applications for teaching and learning materials (ICR p. 36-37).

    165 facilitators (target 163) have been trained to introduce child-centered teaching strategies to implement activities to train personnel in child-centered teaching strategies. Four modules for training materials were developed for facilitators, basic education/preschool principals, methodological groups of teachers, and teachers. (Met target of new training materials available to be used in Phase 2).

    A standardized test of student learning achievement was developed and administered to a sample of 6,000 students in grade 4 and 10,000 students in grade 8. (thus meeting target of standardized test administered).

    Outcomes:
    In-service teacher training institutes have adopted new school-based teacher training strategies. However, the Ministry was not able to report the percentage of teachers using student-centered education as a result of the professional development.

    The ICR did not provide evidence of the improved efficiency of teaching and learning in general secondary and preschools in participating oblasts.

    2. Improve the efficiency of budget allocation and strengthening of budget planning and formulation in general secondary education: Substantial.

    Outputs:
    Regulations regarding the financing formula were adopted in 2008 for the pilot areas and all school accountants completed relevant training.

    Norms and regulation for financing schools were developed for all rayons and oblasts, and a joint resolution of the Ministry of Public Education and Ministry of Finance was adopted that allowed for the piloting of the new scheme and for country-wide implementation of the financing formula. The normative legal basis required to implement per-capita financing in schools began with the adoption of the Presidential Decree No. 3857, “On improving the mechanism of financing of the public education institutions,” dated February 26, 2007, and the Resolution of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan No. 609, “On measures to order the typical staff of the secondary schools,” dated March 29, 2007. These regulations gave all secondary schools of the republic the status of legal person and, from July 1, 2007, made them eligible to receive funds from the regional financial authorities.

    Agreement was reached on a per capita funding formula by the project closing. Per capita financing was developed and piloted in the Bukhara region and a joint resolution between Ministry of Public Education and the Ministry of Finance on implementation of per capita financing in general education schools was adopted. Based on the practice of implementing per capita financing in three oblasts in the first year and in six oblasts in the second year, a number of shortcomings were addressed and changes were incorporated into the new regulations on the procedure for establishing a school budget for 2009 and 2010, when per-capita financing was implemented nationwide

    Outcomes:

    Implementation of the per capita budget allocation throughout the county in oblasts, rather than the 7 oblasts as planned.

    School autonomy in decision-making on financial matters was increased; all schools in the country hold the status of legal person and have their own accountant.

    Allocation of funds to schools was equalized; each school receives a budget allocation according to the number of students in the school, rather than costs.

    3. Improve the capacity of the Ministry of Public Education to implement and monitor investment programs: Substantial.

    The PAD (p. 9) defines capacity to implement and monitor investment programs in relation to assessing student learning. Specifically, the Ministry was to demonstrate improved capacity by conducting a pilot standardized student assessment on a representative sample of students from project schools and collecting and analyzing baseline data.

    Outputs:
    Baseline information on the M&E system’s indicators was collected and analyzed at least once a year. The first baseline report was scheduled to be delivered in 2009, but was actually delivered in 2011.

    In February 2008 a survey of School Boards was completed. This was also a precondition for Phase 2 of funding.

    A Report on the test results was prepared and disseminated.

    New regulations and procedures for establishing a school budget were developed to address shortcomings that emerged from implementation of the per capita financing in years one and two.

    Outcomes:
    A student assessment was piloted and the results were used to inform decisions on teacher training. By the close of the project, assessments had been conducted for grades 4 and 8. According to the results of the assessment, teachers with lower-performance indicators were identified and undertook professional development.

    Test results were reviewed and compared across regions, between cities/villages and boys/girls on reading mathematics and native language by the Board of the Ministry of Public Education. However, no information was provided to describe how the information was used to inform policy or which specific actions were undertaken as a result of the review.

    Triggering the Phase-2 APL. The second phase was conditional on meeting two conditions: (i) school boards in at least 75% of project schools have participated in school needs assessment and prioritization of learning materials; and (ii) standardized student assessment has been piloted in a representative sample of students in both project and nonproject schools. The Phase 1 project met these conditions. The Phase 2 APL was approved on October 15, 2009 and became effective on March 11, 2010, with a timeframe from October, 2009 to September 2013 at an estimated cost of US$28 million.


5. Efficiency:

The economic analysis presented in the PAD put forward the rationale for the project and the reasons for selecting project objectives. Neither the PAD nor the ICR undertook a cost-benefit analysis or estimate of an economic rate of return. The ICR reiterated a few of the PAD’s criterion to justify the project and its selectivity.
The ICR pointed out the administrative inefficiencies in the project. While the project was planned for 18 months duration, the project actually took almost three times as long, as it was extended by 32 months. The main reasons for the extensions were the initial delay in project effectiveness, aggravated by implementation delays resulting from the Borrower’s lack of understanding of World Bank procedures and complex registration and review procedures for approval of international contracts by the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Investment and Trade (ICR. p. 12).

The delays in procurement and delivery of learning materials meant students, teachers, and others were not able to timely benefit from the new materials and equipment, thereby jeopardizing achievement of the project objectives. The ICR (p. 15) reported that in 2010 about half of the materials for preschools were delivered or in the process of being delivered to preschools, with the remaining materials in the Tashkent warehouse awaiting delivery to oblasts and then preschools. Moreover, learning materials for grades 1 through 4, estimated at approximately 40 percent of project funds, were also delayed.

The ICR reported that the Ministry experienced difficulties absorbing and planning for the additional funds. As a result, the project closed with US$2.83 million in uncommitted resources, including US$1.8 million from canceled non-performing contracts, penalties to suppliers, and savings from effective contract negotiation. Two important contracts had to be canceled owing to the failure of suppliers to deliver prior to the credit closing date; the reallocation of more than US$1.5 million released from these contract cancellations shortly before the closing date could not be completed because of time constraints.

    Overall, efficiency is rated modest.

    a. If available, enter the Economic Rate of Return (ERR)/Financial Rate of Return at appraisal and the re-estimated value at evaluation:


Rate Available?
Point Value
Coverage/Scope*
Appraisal:
No
%
%
ICR estimate:
No
%
%

* Refers to percent of total project cost for which ERR/FRR was calculated

6. Outcome:

The objectives and design were substantially relevant and supported the aim of Uzbekistan's Welfare Improvement Strategy (2007-2010). Two of the project's three objectives were substantially achieved, the third only modestly because of the lack of outcome evidence of improved learning. The project activities benefited teachers, principals and students within targeted oblasts and rayons, based on an equity criteria established by the Ministry. Efficiency was modest in light of considerable shortcomings in the efficient implementation of the project.

a. Outcome Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

7. Rationale for Risk to Development Outcome Rating:

The government is highly committed to education and the strategies in the project. This was Phase I of an APL. The triggers for the second phase have been satisfied and the second project will be implemented over a four-year period of time. During the course of the project, the government implemented the per capita funding throughout the country, rather than the one oblast originally planned. Based on the practice of implementing per capita financing in three oblasts in the first year and in six oblasts in the second year, a number of shortcomings were addressed and changes were incorporated into the new regulations on the procedure for establishing a school budget for 2009-2010, when per capita financing was implemented nationwide.
Shortcomings in the government's procurement and financial processes remain risks; however, the follow-up project contained specific risk mitigation measures to address financial management weaknesses (Second Basic Education PAD, p. 19). Similarly, the sustainability of the reforms and capacity building begun with this project will continue with the subsequent one.

a. Risk to Development Outcome Rating: Moderate

8. Assessment of Bank Performance:

a. Quality at entry:
The project design was based on good analytic work in the education sector of other Central Asian countries and dialogue with the government to focus on general school education. However, several issues at entry created implementation problems for the project. There was an underestimate of the capacity of the Ministry of Public Education, and the State Agency Talimtominot (which was tasked with disseminating teaching and learning materials). There was inadequate assessment of the time that would be required to implement the project, as well as the learning curve for the Ministry to become familiar with Bank procedures. It was decided not to have a Project Implementation Unit to supplement Ministry capacity to handle the complex requirements of the Bank, even though this was the first Bank-supported education project in the country. Instead it was expected that the Ministry would hire consultants to work with them to build the Ministry’s internal capacity. This slowed implementation because Ministry line staff had difficulty with this arrangement. Inadequate weight and assessment of the risks with the government’s procurement processes, as well as a lack of mitigation measures to cope with delayed procurement, slowed project implementation (ICR, p. 20). There were inconsistencies between the intermediate indicators mentioned in the PAD and Results Framework.

Quality-at-Entry Rating: Moderately Unsatisfactory

b. Quality of supervision:
The project had three Task Team leaders, two during supervision. The Bank team provided quality technical assistance to build the capacity of the Borrower in relation to M&E and recruitment of international consultants. The team had ongoing communication with the Borrower through monthly video conferences and missions to discuss implementation and fiduciary issues. A productive working relationship was established between the Bank team and the government. A shortcoming was lack of follow-up with the client on the regular submission of project progress reports during the early years (ICR p. 28).

Quality of Supervision Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

Overall Bank Performance Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

9. Assessment of Borrower Performance:

a. Government Performance:
The government was fully committed to improving education and achieving the objectives. In addition to the President, the Council of Ministers and Ministry of Finance showed clear commitment to the project's objectives through approval of resolutions. The government developed sound national education policies that were well coordinated with the Welfare Improvement Strategy (2007-2010) and donors. Systemic and inefficient country administrative procedures slowed project implementation There was no single institutional oversight or regulatory authority for public procurement, and the difficulties this caused were compounded by lengthy price verification and contract registration procedures. (ICR. p. 29).

Government Performance Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

b. Implementing Agency Performance:
The Ministry of Public Education was the implementing agency. The Ministry showed a high level of commitment to the project preparation as evidenced by involving a variety of government officials and other agencies in various working groups to plan project implementation. However, it lacked experience in working with the Bank and had limited capacity to lead the project procurement activities. This was due to the complexities of the country's fiduciary systems and relative lack of experience with Bank-supported project guidelines and procedures. As a result, the Ministry’s Department of School Endowments, despite being in charge of procurement, was not very involved in the project procurement activities because these activities were carried out primarily by the project's consultants. The Bank concluded that the Ministry was "not capable of supporting the preparation of regular and reliable financial statements" (ICR, p. 20). Another weakness in the implementing agency was lack of regular progress reporting during the early years. The performance of the Talimtaminot Agency, which was charged with distribution of materials, caused significant delays in the delivery of teaching aids, because the transfer of goods was not well coordinated from the central warehouse to districts and schools. The delays seriously affected the pace of project implementation.

Implementing Agency Performance Rating: Moderately Unsatisfactory

Overall Borrower Performance Rating: Moderately Satisfactory

10. M&E Design, Implementation, & Utilization:

a. M&E Design:
There were shortcomings in the results framework such as inconsistencies between the number of indicators between the ones in the PAD and the Results Framework. The Results Framework specified targets, but no baseline was established. The Results Framework did not separate Phase I and 2, which made it difficult to measure this project's impact. For example, the timeline of data collection for the beneficiary surveys and standardized learning assessment were not contained within Phase 1, and so the changes in beneficiary surveys and standardized tests could not be examined within this project. Indicator one for objective one (student learning achievement as measured by creation of a new standardized test of learning achievement to be administered to a sample of students in project and non-project schools) is insufficient to measure the objective of improved efficiency of teaching and learning in general secondary schools and preschools within participating regions. (ICR p. 3-4).

b. M&E Implementation:
The Ministry’s Department of Standards and Monitoring coordinated the monitoring and evaluation plan for the project that was carried out through the network of M&E specialist at the oblast and rayon public education departments. The lack of experience of the Department of Standards and Monitoring in creating monitoring instruments caused delay. For example, the project baseline was developed around year four of Phase 1, which did not permit adequate time for successive measures of project impact (ICR, p.18).

a. M&E Utilization:
The involvement of the network of M&E specialists in data collection activities fostered ownership across the system by various agents of the project. Data that was collected was utilized by the government to inform decisions (e.g.teachers who would be targeted to receive training).

M&E Quality Rating: Modest

11. Other Issues:

a. Safeguards:
This project did not trigger any safeguard policies, since the project was rated in category C under OP 4.10 Environmental Assessment

b. Fiduciary Compliance:
The project operated in a challenging fiduciary environment. The main problems were (1) inadequate capacity in public sector accounting; (2) poor financial reporting and audit arrangements; (3) a weak internal control environment, including an underdeveloped internal audit system; and (4) weak oversight arrangements by the legislature (ICR p. 19). In January 2009, the Bank carried out a financial assessment of the Ministry which concluded that the project’s accounting system had improved, but was not yet capable of supporting the preparation of regular and reliable financial statements. Following implementation of the action plan agreed during the January 31, 2009 assessment, the project accounting system was modified to process all financial transactions. Subsequently the Ministry submitted quarterly financial management reports in a timely manner and acceptable quality (ICR, p. 20). Audit reports were unqualified.

c. Unintended Impacts (positive or negative):
None known

d. Other:
None known



12. Ratings:

ICR
IEG Review
Reason for Disagreement/Comments
Outcome:
Satisfactory
Moderately Satisfactory
The objectives and design were substantially relevant. Two of the project's three objectives were substantially achieved, while the third only modestly because of the lack of outcome evidence of improved teaching and learning. Efficiency was rated as modest.  
Risk to Development Outcome:
Negligible to Low
Moderate
The risk continues to be the shortcomings in the government's procurement and financial processes. 
Bank Performance:
Moderately Satisfactory
Moderately Satisfactory
 
Borrower Performance:
Moderately Satisfactory
Moderately Satisfactory
 
Quality of ICR:
 
Satisfactory
 
NOTES:
- When insufficient information is provided by the Bank for IEG to arrive at a clear rating, IEG will downgrade the relevant ratings as warranted beginning July 1, 2006.
- The "Reason for Disagreement/Comments" column could cross-reference other sections of the ICR Review, as appropriate.

13. Lessons:
The ICR contained several lessons:
      • Education projects require time to achieve results and should not be planned with too short a time frame. The 18 month plan for this project was unrealistic and extensions could not make up for the lack of realistic planning needed for deep and sustainable reforms.
      • To better support institutional reform and capacity building in centrally planned economies, Bank staff need to understand the nature of the public administration, procurement, and financial management systems and the working environment and culture. Bank staff also need to better support the learning curve of a new agency when implementing a Bank-financed project. It would be prudent to provide training on procurement and fiduciary matters in countries that are not familiar with Bank processes, prior to project implementation.

14. Assessment Recommended?

Yes
Why?
It would be helpful to explore the topic of school/parental governance and per capita funding further in combination with another project to gain lessons for other countries.

15. Comments on Quality of ICR:

The ICR was concise and provided sufficient information to assess project performance on outcomes, despite shortcomings in the Results Framework. Reporting was internally consistent. The ICR's analysis provided a candid assessment of the issues at entry which affected project performance, as well as the procurement issues within the government. The ICR generally complied with guidelines.

a. Quality of ICR Rating: Satisfactory

(ICRR-Rev6INV-Jun-2011)
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