United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Consultant (Data Analyst for Integration, Analysis and Reporting on Teacher Self-efficacy Beliefs, Safe Reopening of Schools Post-confinement, Teacher Attendance and Mics-eagle in A Covid19 Context)

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Job Description

The specific objectives of the job are: 1. Report on school reopening, teacher self-efficacy beliefs and teacher attendance in the context of a school-fee exemption policy post-COVID19 closure/confinement.

2. Report on OOSC trends.

3. Compile MICS-EAGLE reports delayed by the COVID19 sanitary measures.

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Background 

On January of 2020 the OMS declared an Emergency related to the spread of COVID19. On March 11 the pandemic was declared and on March 19 the first cases of COVID19 were diagnosed in Madagascar. This led to closure of borders and the start of nation-wide sanitary measures, including confinement and, starting on 23 of March, closing of schools from pre-primary to secondary levels. This affected around 900,000 children in pre-primary, 3.6 million in primary, 1.5 million in secondary education. It also postponed many school-level activities, including those related to school governance and accountability. Among this was the MICS-EAGLE initiative which attempts to assist local authorities in the Analysis of the national MICS data to produce indicators that are relevant for their communities.

The Ministry of Education developed a strategy that sought the continuation of the education service, the safe return to schools once the crisis subsided and reinforcing the system to respond effectively to this and future emergencies. By May 4 of 2020 more than half of 120,000 school-posters with hygiene-related messages and 15,000 posters for the wider community had been distributed. To promote the continuation of learning during the emergency, radio and TV broadcasts were introduced by the Ministry of Education with support from partners on April 7 and the distribution of self-study booklets for levels 6, 5, 4 and 3 started on May 12. 636,000 booklets had been delivered to regional governments. Meanwhile, technical and financial partners have continued their support to the Ministry of Education to strengthen their capacity to respond to the crisis. Local Governance activities, including MICS-EAGLE were rolled out implementing social distancing and sanitary measures starting on October 2020.

Madagascar’s education system requires students at certain levels to take an examination for purposes of certification and promotion. Pupils in classes 7, 3 and Terminale can only move further along their academic career if they pass their level’s examinations. The government decided to open schools, but only to host pupils form those grades. By October of 2020 pupils from those levels had concluded the school year and had taken their examinations. Also, in October, preparations for the new school year started. This incuded the launch of the 2020 wave of the “Course de Remise à Niveau” (CRAN), an initiative regularly supported by UNICEF that attempts to provide an opportunity for out-of-school pupils to catch up in preparation for the new school year. In 2020 UNICEF expanded its support to the training of teachers who will implement CRAN from the seven regions prioritized for education, to the whole country, in an effort to offset some of the negative impact of COVID19 sanitary measures.

The COVID19 pandemic has modified the usual way in which teachers approach their work and the expectations they have of what should happen in a classroom. They are also being exposed to an environment where new communication and technology approaches are being discussed and tested. These factors can have an impact on the sense teachers have of their capacity to promote learning, on their beliefs of what is good teaching and on the types of interactions that can be promoted to prevent further spread of COVID19. This is particularly relevant in a context like Madagascar where there is already significant heterogeneity in the teacher cadre. Most teachers in Madagascar are recruited by the community and a significant proportion among them have not completed secondary education or participated in initial Teacher Training programmes. This lack of consistency in the professional profiles can also create differences between teachers regarding their sense of competency and their beliefs on what constitutes good teaching. There might be further divergence, given the adaptations they will be required to implement in a post COVID19 scenario.

Another element that has increased the complexity of the return to school in the 2020-2021 cycle is the announcement by the government of Madagascar of the exemption of school fees nation-wide. A significant percentage of teachers in the country are not public officers, but individuals engaged and paid at the community level. The implications of eliminating the capacity of schools to procure income to pay for these teachers might have an impact on teacher attendance and overall quality of education.

Therefore, there is a need to investigate how the COVID19 sanitary measures, school closures and reopening and postponement of local-level accountability activities has affected the overall operation of the education sector.

Justification

As mentioned in the previous section, there is a need to further understand how the COVID19 sanitary measures, the exemption of school fees and the delay in implementation of local-level accountability initiatives have affected the capacity of the system to offer an adequate education service to Malagasy children. To this end, UNICEF Madagascar Country Office wished to conduct an analysis of teacher self-efficacy beliefs in the post COVID19 confinement scenario, the characteristics of school reopening, the characteristics of teacher attendance in the first semester of the 2020-2021 school cycle, the out-of-school children trends and the capacity to implement local-level analysis based on MICS.

How can you make a difference?

Purposes : Under the guidance and general supervision of the Chief of Education and the Education Specialist, the consultant will:
  1. Support the validation, analysis and reporting of the teacher self-efficacy beliefs survey conducted among CRAN teachers. This might require item scaling (either classic or IRT), SEM, response-tendency analysis, bias analysis or others as per a review of the characteristics of the data collected.
  2. Conduct the analysis of the safe school re-opening data collected by quantitative and qualitative school-level surveys. This will require quantitative and qualitative analysis, integration of both types of data into a single report and using the conclusions draw to contextualize finding on teacher self-efficacy and attendance.
  3. Conduct analysis on a rapid-attendance-survey that relies on Lot-Quality-Assessment-Sampling. These results should inform the findings on school reopening, complement findings on teacher self-efficacy beliefs and provide data on the attendance trends in the context of the policy of school-fee exemption.
  4. Conduct analysis of basic out-of-school-children (OOSC) indicators using MICS data and relying on the analysis procedures employed by UNICEF to estimate OOSC indicators.
  5. Compile the results / findings from the MICS-EAGLE workshops conducted in 2020 and conduct supplementary analysis if appropriate. The compilation should include a national report on the workshops, description of the analysis results and drafts of briefs for dissemination of the results.
The specific purposes :

  1. Report on school reopening, teacher self-efficacy beliefs and teacher attendance in the context of a school-fee exemption policy post-COVID19 closure/confinement.
  2. Report on OOSC trends.
  3. Compile MICS-EAGLE reports delayed by the COVID19 sanitary measures.
Tasks

1. Review, clean and systematize all data sets.

2. Discuss and negotiate with the UNICEF Madagascar Education section all analytical procedures and report contents.

3. Draft a report on school re-opening that includes separate sections on: Report on safe school re-opening, report on teacher self-efficacy beliefs, report on attendance, integration of these three sources of information to draw conclusions and recommendations on ways forward. Additionally, the report should include the following annexes: Psychometric characteristics and recommendations for the teacher self-efficacy survey, pilot results of the LQAS for attendance and recommendations of its implementation in the future as a monitoring tool.

4. Draft a MICS-EAGLE report (as per the standard guidelines of the MICS-EAGLE initiative), dissemination briefs and a set of recommendations for implementation of the initiative on ways forward give the COVID19 context.

5. A brief on OOSC estimations using the most recent MICS data for Madagascar to establish a baseline for future analysis of the impact that the COVID19 pandemic had on the education system.

Note: Reports should be delivered either in French or English.

  Performance indicators for evaluation:

Indicator for completion and satisfaction measurement will be based on UNICEF Madagascar own evaluation and judgement, and not that of the Consultant. This means that deliverables will be deemed to be satisfactorily completed by the supervisor of the consultancy. The supervisor is required to provide timely and written feedback to the consultant in order to avoid miscommunication and hold regular meetings with the consultant as needed.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s, PhD ) in education, psychology, sociology, or related field with proven experience in psychometric and/or survey work.
  • A minimum of five (05) years of relevant professional experience in developing surveys, scales or similar.
  • Relevant experience in a united nations system agency or organization is considered as an asset.
  • Fluency in either English or French is required. Fluency in both is an asset.
Specific technical knowledge required (for the job):

• Psychometric analysis, scaling, statistical modelling.

• Qualitative analysis.

• Analysis of survey tools.

• Previous work on teacher survey tools would be an asset.

Application Procedure/Call for Proposals

Interested candidates are required to submit a technical proposal on how they intend to approach the work. The proposal should include a timeline, and methodology, based on the Terms of Reference. The proposal must also include detailed CV of the consultant, as well as a financial proposal, clearly indicating daily rate for professional fees. The financial proposal must be all-inclusive of all costs (consultancy fees and where applicable air fares, airport transfers, daily living expenses). This is an international level consultancy and competitive market rates should apply.

Evaluation of Candidate:

The consultant will be competitively selected from a list of applicants based on their past experience of doing similar work (extensive experience in writing donor reports, in compiling and editing annual reports for various UNICEF offices).

  Submission of applications:

Interested candidates are kindly requested to apply and upload the following documents to the assigned requisition in UNICEF Vacancies: http://www.unicef.org/about/employ/
  1. Letter of interest and confirmation of availability;
  2. Copy of highest academic degree;
  3. Technical proposal which clearly explains the outline on how to deliver the tasks and deliverables (preferably less than 3 pages);
  4. One sample of a report, journal article, dissertation or similar in which the candidate has reported a scaling procedure, psychometric analysis in general or statistical modelling;
  5. Performance evaluation reports or references of similar consultancy assignments (if available);
  6. Financial proposal: All-inclusive lump-sum cost including consultancy fee (daily) for this assignment as per work assignment.
For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

The UNICEF competencies required for this post are...

• Applying Technical Expertise [II] • Deciding and Initiating Actions [II] To view our competency framework, please visit here.

Click here to learn more about UNICEF’s values and competencies.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

Remarks:

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.u
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