The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government of Bangladesh on Thursday signed a loan agreement for $225 million for overhauling secondary education and boosting education quality, access, and relevance in the country.
The assistance is the third and final tranche of the $500 million Secondary Education Sector Investment Program (SESIP) approved by the ADB in 2013.
Secretary, Economic Relations Division (ERD) Kazi Shofiqul Azam and Country Director, ADB Manmohan Parkash signed the agreement on behalf of Bangladesh and ADB, respectively at a ceremony in the city.
“The assistance will further support government’s secondary education reform to prepare youths to meet the requirements of a rapidly developing economy,” said Country Director Manmohan Parkash.
“Building on the first and second tranches, the project will enhance quality and relevance of secondary education, increase equitable access and retention, and strengthen education management and governance.”
The SESIP, scheduled to be completed in 2023, is supporting the government’s comprehensive secondary education development program, backed by development partners in a harmonised manner.
The government envisages an increase of about 3.5 million secondary school students by 2023, requiring an additional 145,000 teachers and 10,000 more schools.
The $225 million ADB assistance will develop a competency-based curriculum; improve teaching, especially in science, math, English, and Bangla; promote the use of ICT in teaching; strengthen classroom assessment; reform national examination; and pilot pre-vocational and vocational subjects in secondary schools and madrasahs.
It will also support commencement of harmonized stipend program; introduce resource teacher program; strengthen decentralized education management; and operationalise e-procurement in education entities.