This Guidance Note provides information on how Low Cost Private Schools
(LCPS) can become involved in supporting access to a quality basic
education for all. It identifies the contribution that LCPS can make to
increasing both the quality and quantity of schooling, complementing as
well as challenging state provision either through a PPP contracting
arrangement or through private sector led development. A variety of
possible interventions is described, as well as the outcomes of current
or recent reform initiatives and research in developing countries. These
outcomes and the resulting recommendations will certainly not all be
relevant for all countries all of the time. Decisions on what path to
follow must take into account the stage of development of a country’s
economy and current governance and operational contexts.
This Guidance Note is particularly focused on the engagement of LCPS in
the development and delivery of the primary and secondary education
cycles. For the purposes of this Guidance Note, LCPS include 'for
profit' and 'not for profit' providers and a range of provision –
from conventional schools to contracting LCPS to provide services under
public funding arrangements.
The Guidance Note is in six sections:
Section 1: Executive Summary.
Section 2: Policy and Practice Background. This section provides a brief
background on the policy reasons why the LCPS market segment has become
significant and an exploration of the practical value of investing in
partnerships with LCPS, including some of the research supporting and
questioning such partnerships.
Section 3: Definitional and Conceptual Issues. This section considers
some of the semantic and conceptual difficulties involved in analysing
LCPS and a look at some of the main similarities and differences between
'for profit' and 'not for profit' LCPS.
Section 4: Private Sector Involvement and Partnerships. This section
provides an assessment of recent major shifts in approach to LCPS,
particularly regarding contracting of education services in low income
countries and the relevance of these to future initiatives.
Section 5: Potential Initiatives. This section outlines some key lessons
learnt and possible initiatives going forward across three focus areas:
the partnership framework, the operating environment (with a specific
focus on regulation), and finance.
Section 6: References and Further Reading.
Anon. Engaging the Low Cost Private Schools in Basic Education: Issues, Challenges and Opportunities - Guidance Note. (2013) 37 pp.