Our Work

Delivering excellence in social development consultancy and research


Why we work on education

Despite huge gains in the last 15 years, 57 million children remain out of school due to a complex web of barriers including gender discrimination, conflict, disability, and living in underserved and remote areas. There is still much to be done to ensure that each and every child enjoys her or his right to a quality education. This is in spite of increases in enrolment, internationally-recognised literacy and numeracy tests often find low levels of learning in low income countries. We recognise education as a human right and as a means to break the cycle of poverty in households and communities. We support partners to create inclusive and equitable education systems and work with children and communities to improve access, retention and learning.

Our approach

We believe in equity and inclusion in education. Our approach is to ensure that marginalised and excluded groups, including girls, refugees and children with disabilities, have access to safe, relevant and high quality education. Our portfolio of work focuses on addressing both supply and demand side barriers. It spans community participation, making schools safe for children and building the capacity of teachers and other education stakeholders to meet the needs of every child.

All of our work is grounded in context-specific experience and knowledge. We focus in particular on detailed analyses of gender, marginalisation, power dynamics, agency, inclusion and exclusion. We examine connections with other sectors and thematic areas such as health rights and different forms of violence, including early and forced marriage, sexual violence and abuse. In addition to numeracy and literacy, we promote broader learning opportunities like life skills, sexual and reproductive health education, global citizenship and peace education.  Child protection issues, structures and systems are paramount to any work we undertake for or with children and we have skills and experience in this field.

We have extensive experience of working on mainstream primary and secondary education initiatives. We also work on non-state, alternative or non-formal education programmes, vocational training and skills building, and tertiary education provision.

Examples of current and previous work in education:

  • Qualitative study assessing the links between Comprehensive Sexuality Education and Violence Against Women and Girls, Plan UK, 2015
  • Strategy for participation, transition and retention of girls in secondary education in Kano state, DFID Nigeria, 2015
  • DFID Girl’s Education Challenge Fund, 2012-2020
  • Quantitative analysis for the year 3 evaluation and programme review of Plan UK’s DFID Partnership Programme Agreement (PPA) - Empowering adolescent girls through education, 2013
  • DFID guidance note on "Addressing VAWG through education programming", 2013
  • DFID Nigeria Education Sector Support Programme (ESSPIN), 2011-2016
  • Mid-term evaluation: Empowering adolescent girls through education, Plan UK, 2012
  • Impact assessment of inclusive education approaches in Uganda, 2011