Civil Society Organizations Present Findings of Education Policy Evaluations

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Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia (June 12, 2018) - More than 140 representatives from the education departments of Ulaanbaatar city districts, as well as directors and principals of secondary schools, gathered on June 11, 2018 to discuss the findings of an evaluation of policies for secondary education, such as school environment, extra-curriculum activities of students, and prevention of noncommunicable diseases caused by unhealthy lifestyles.

The evaluations were conducted for the first time by civil society organizations, as part of the Mainstreaming Social Accountability in Mongolia (MASAM) project, supported by the World Bank and Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.

“Evaluating education policies and programs with citizens’ involvement opened up ways for citizens to participate in the decision-making process, with the ultimate aim of improving public service delivery,” said Sh. Ankhmaa, Deputy Governor of Ulaanbaatar city. “The Ulaanbaatar City Governor’s office is planning to institutionalize the process of conducting external evaluations for those programs and policies that need improvement.”

The Independent Research Institute of Mongolia, Mongolia Education Alliance, and Tungaamal NGOs were competitively selected to perform the first round of policy evaluations supported by the project. Consequently, more than 70 government and non-government organizations, research institutes have been trained since late 2017.

The process enabled stakeholders to develop recommendations to enhance education policy results for each agency and organization involved in its implementation. “Working on the external evaluation, it was particularly interesting to learn the process by doing. We received lessons and step-by-step guidance throughout the process,” said B. Davaasuren from the Mongolian Education Alliance NGO. “Policy evaluation is like a lens through which we are able to see not only education sector issues but larger development issues of our country at large.”

The MASAM project is part of a larger effort by the World Bank to support better governance in Mongolia, complementing projects related to public financial management, local governance, and transparency.