Evaluating Educational Reform Projects in Developing Countries: A Case Study of Teacher Educational Reform in Egypt
The importance of developing local capacity to evaluate the impact of interventions has been highlighted as a new solution to an old problem in educational reform in developing countries. Due to “aid fatigue” experienced by the international community in the 1990s, international aid agencies have recognised that development interventions can not materialize educational outcomes successfully, without enhancing the local capacity and ownership in developing countries. One of the issues with “aid fatigue” was the limited attention given to monitoring and evaluation activities, particularly by the local stakeholders. Against the above concern, evaluation processes need to be devised to determine the impact of educational interventions in developing countries and, simultaneously, enhance local capacity development in this field. This study examined evaluation for a teacher education reform project in Egypt, namely by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which implements Japan’s official development assistance at a governmental level. The data were collected from various layers of participants of the project through archival documents, interviews and questionnaire survey. The archival documents indicate that the evaluation process was designed and conducted by JICA mainly for their internal compliance requirement and focused on educational intervention. In contrast, however, the empirical data suggested that the local capacity development as well as the educational interventions should be evaluated jointly and not just by the donor agencies but also by the local stakeholders.