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System strengthening

We have been working on at-scale education reform for nearly 40 years, both as researchers investigating powerful international case studies of successful school reform, and as practitioners working in partnership with Ministries of Education to deliver school improvement at scale in jurisdictions from Brunei Darussalam to England, Dubai, and Rwanda.

We work in partnership with governments, NGOs, and donors to develop and support effective education reforms which improve teaching and learning across whole education systems. Using evidence-informed benchmarks and tailoring interventions to local contexts, we help to maximise gains in learning outcomes – especially for the most marginalised learners.

Our consultants have expertise in supporting education at all levels of the education system – from designing solutions to bolster foundational skills, such as literacy and numeracy, to interventions to support students’ transitions into further education and work. Our recent consultancy work includes the design of teacher training reforms to improve early grade reading and mathematics skills in Sierra Leone, in partnership with UNICEF, and supporting the provision of careers information, advice, and guidance for young people in Jordan.

In strengthening school systems, we employ our distinctive school System Reform Framework.  Drawing on our public research and wider international literature, our framework identifies the six core capabilities of rapidly improving school systems, culminating in improved outcomes for all learners. These are: vision and leadership, coalitions and capacity building for change, delivery architecture, data for accountability and improvement, teacher and school leader effectiveness, and evidence-informed policy.

Our work in system strengthening also includes more than 20 years’ work in fragile and conflict-affected states and supporting education in emergencies. In addition to providing rapid-response support and advice to ministries of education around the world during the Covid-19 pandemic, our experience ranges from large-scale post-conflict education capacity building and reform in Cambodia (1997-2017), Rwanda (2001-2016), and Somalia (late 1990s-2017), to providing immediate technical assistance in Ethiopia, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Nigeria, South Sudan, and Uganda, among others.


Our work in system strengthening in Africa

Our recent work in system strengthening in Africa includes:


Contact us to find out more about our work in system strengthening around the world.


System strengthening on our programmes