Early childhood development, defined as the period from birth up to eight years of age, is a critical window of opportunity for a child’s cognitive, social, emotional and physical development. Understanding the importance of investment in young children and their families, the Government of Rwanda developed and approved ECD policy and strategic plan (2011) which was revised to a comprehensive Policy (2016), Food and Nutrition Policy (2013-2018) and other child development related policies, offering government orientation on interventions to support children’s full physical, cognitive, language, social, emotional and psychological development. The policy is aligned with renewed government commitments under the EDPRS II (2013-18), the National Strategy for Transformation (NST) (2017-2023), Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the revised Vision 2020 targets.
VSO is key player in education sector in Rwanda for over 20 years (since 1998).
Over the past five years, VSO has been supporting ECD at both national level with regards to policy and at field level with regards to teaching, teaching methodologies, parental engagement and school leadership through the following programmes:-
- Enhancing Early Childhood Education in Rwanda (EQECER) (2014-2015; a 2 year programme in a partnership between VSO and UNICEF with funding from ELMA foundation. This programme supported curriculum review and pre-service training across 16 TTCs and several pre-primary/ECD centres.
- Strengthening School Readiness in Rwanda (Itegure Kwiga) (2016-2020); a 5 year programme in partnership between VSO and Nyamasheke district with funding from Dubai Cares Foundation. This programme is supporting the development of model ECD centres in Nyamasheke district as a scalable model across the district.
- Get ready to read (Itegure Kwiga) (2017-2020); a 3 year programme in partnership between VSO and UNICEF with funding from USAID. This programme is supporting emergent literacy/pre-primary reading across 16 districts.
Since 2014 VSO has been playing a critical role both at national level to shape the policy framework and curriculum and at field level to model scalable solutions around learner centred teaching methodologies, developing teaching and learning materials and parental engagement. As a result VSO has worked across all the 16 TTCs and 160 ECE/ECD schools/centres. Going forward, VSO Rwanda would like to continue to support the GOR in the coming five years. To do this better, VSO Rwanda would like to review the ECE/ECD landscape and redefine the unique role and contribution of VSO.
Objectives of the Study
The main purpose of this study is to redefine VSO’s role and unique contribution towards ECE/ECD development over the next five years based on its past experience and the unique volunteering for development model.
The specific objectives of this study include:-
- To provide an overview of ECE/ECD landscape in Rwanda over the past five years (2014/2015 to 2019/2020) highlighting the most critical developments and changes.
- To provide an analysis of VSO strategic contribution towards ECE/ECD development over the past five years (2014/2015 to 2018/2019) focusing on national level work with URCE/REB, Teacher Training Colleges, Districts and schools/centres.
- To provide a strategic outlook of ECE/ECD development priorities in Rwanda over the coming five years (2019/2020 to 2024/2025).
- To provide strategic recommendations of VSO’s strategic contribution towards these ECE/ECD priorities aligned with VSO’s unique value of volunteering model.
- To identify strategic partners who played a key role in the development of ECE/ECD over the past 5 years and those who will remain critical partners in the next 5 years.
To complete this study, the selec ted consultant will develop a detailed methodology which will be discussed and agreed with VSO Rwanda. Meanwhile, VSO Rwanda expects the consultant to explore the following methodologies among others.
1 Desk review of policy frameworks, development partner’s priorities, contributions of VSO Rwanda, other NGOs, CSOs, and FBOs towards development of ECE/ECD in Rwanda.
2 Key informant interviews with national and district level stakeholders engaged in the development of ECE/ECED in Rwanda over the past five years. This will include among others line ministries, technical agencies, other NGOs, TTCs etc
- Focus groups discussions especially at field level with school leaders, teachers, caregivers, parents and community members engaged in ECE/ECD work.
- Other research methodologies deemed suitable by the consultant, agreed with VSO Rwanda.
The following deliverables are expected from this study:-
1 Desk review of seconda ry data
2 Inception report/final plan
3 Field research and data collection
4 Data analysis and preliminary report
5 Stakeholders consultative workshop
6 Final report discussed with VSO
7 Final report designed and printed
VSO will review applications on a rolling basis without waiting for the closing date. We plan to sign the contract with selected consultant by mid-February, 2019.
We expect the final deliverables to be completed by mid-March, 2019.