IMPROVING READING SKILLS BY ENCOURAGING CHILDREN TO READ IN SCHOOL: A RANDOMIZED EVALUATION OF THE SA AKLAT SISIKAT READING PROGRAM IN THE PHILIPPINES
Year of Publication 2011
Seven hundred and seventy-five million adults cannot read (UIS, 2011).The poor quality of public schools in developing countries is a major factor. However, our limited understanding of the education production function hinders attempts to ameliorate their conditions. We know providing resources without other inputs rarely improves student performance. We know resources can affect improvements when paired with a larger array of inputs (Glewwe and Kremer, 2006).
We do not know which inputs are necessary. For reading in particular, studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of large comprehensive changes. Banerjee et al. (2007), which studies an Indian remedial education program, is a good example. The intervention causes students’ reading skills to improve, but because the intervention changes the educational environment along multiple dimensions—additional teachers, new pedagogical methods, new curriculum, changes to organization of the classroom, and additional resources—we cannot identify which components cause the improvements.