USAID’s Education Policy, released in November 2018, provides an Agency-wide vision and direction for supporting partner countries in strengthening their capacity to deliver quality learning opportunities for children and youth.
The primary purpose of programming in education by USAID is to achieve sustained, measurable improvements in learning outcomes and skills development. The policy applies to education programming across all levels (from pre-primary through higher education), contexts (stable contexts to crisis and conflict-affected environments), settings (formal and non-formal), and providers (state and non-state).
The principles laid out in the policy drive decision-making for new education investments supporting the vision that partner country education systems must enable all children and youth to acquire the education and skills needed to be productive members of society:
- Prioritize country-focus and ownership
- Focus and concentrate investments on measurably and sustainably improving learning and educational outcomes
- Strengthen systems and develop capacity in local institutions
- Work in partnership and leverage resources
- Drive decision-making and investments using evidence and data
- Promote equity and inclusion
The priority areas laid out in the policy serve as a general framing and orientation for USAID’s work in education. These priorities illustrate key areas that are critical to supporting countries on their journey to self-reliance:
- Children and youth, particularly the most marginalized and vulnerable, have increased access to quality education that is safe, relevant, and promotes social well-being.
- Children and youth gain literacy, numeracy, and social-emotional skills that are foundational to future learning and success.
- Youth gain the skills they need to lead productive lives, gain employment, and positively contribute to society.
- Higher education institutions have the capacity to be central actors in development by conducting and applying research, delivering quality education, and engaging with communities.
Read the New PolicyUSAID Education Policy
The Education Policy is accompanied by Program Cycle Implementation and Operational Guidance that provides information on operational aspects of the policy, including key considerations throughout the program cycle, Agency-level monitoring and reporting, budget and funding parameters, and other areas. This guidance assists Missions in practically applying the principles and achieving the priorities outlined in the USAID Education Policy.
In addition, there are an array of Good Practice Documents that provide in-depth information on technical topics. Start by browsing this list of tools and good practice documents, sorted by only those developed or funded by USAID. Or, for an even shorter list, we recommend starting with any of the following synthesis blogs on foundational topics:
- Reading Programs that Work
- The What, Why and How of USAID Higher Education Programs
- What to Consider When Designing a Youth Workforce Development Activity
- Making the Case for Social and Emotional Learning
- Defining Gender
- Defining Disability
- USAID's Approach to Private Sector Engagement in Education
- 10 Principles for Developing ICT in Education Programs