Jordan, US launch technical program to support education, youth

Participants at a Jordanian-USAID meeting which launched a technical program to support the kingdom’s education and youth programs. (Photos: Facebook)
AMMAN — Jordan and the US launched a technical program, which will complement the direct financing of education, youth activities and enhancing the Jordanian government’s capacities.اضافة اعلان

USAID Jordan Deputy Mission Director Margaret Spears joined Minister of Youth Mohammad Al-Nabulsi and Ministry of Education Secretary-General Dr Nawaf Al-Ajarmeh to launch USAID’s Technical Assistance Program.

The program will support the Jordanian government in technical areas, such as Arabic literacy and numeracy, science, and English, and in operational areas including procurement, human resources, and information management, Spears told reporters at the launching ceremony.

She said the program will also improve the government’s ability to efficiently budget, plan, and implement its own reforms.

“The Technical Assistance Program represents a key area of collaboration that enables the Government of Jordan to effectively lead and manage education and youth reforms,” Spears said.

Jordan’s ministry of education will specifically benefit from the program because it will assist it in improving its teaching practices, school leadership and management, Spears said.

Earlier this year, she pointed out, the program provided assistance to administer a diagnostic study of Arabic literacy and mathematics to assess learning loss for students in grades four through six.

The findings from this study will be instrumental as the ministry of education addresses learning losses after prolonged COVID-19-related school closures, Spears explained.

With support from the program, the ministry of youth recently established a Monitoring and Evaluation Unit, which will enhance evidence-based decision-making systems and improve the evaluation process of the ministry’s field programs across 200 youth centers, the USAID said.

The Unit facilitates data exchange and communication internally and across field directorates and centers, according to Spears and her assistants. The Unit will also integrate key activities from the National Youth Strategy 2019–2025 to ensure proper and impactful implementation.

Spears along with the two Jordanian officials praised their partnership and commitment to capacity building and improving effective service delivery to children and youth throughout the Kingdom.

Spears told Jordan News that the technical Assistance Program 2021–2026, with a budget of $39.9 million, is in partnership with the ministries of education, youth and the Creative Associates International, an international development organization.

This project ensures that government partners have the necessary skills and resources to affect change in the education and youth sectors and increase institutional capacity, Spears explained.

She said working with the ministry of education to address the learning gap mainly in four subjects, namely Arabic, English, Science, and mathematics, which pass through two approaches; diagnosis assessment from grades four through six, and developing a program for teachers to help students in the classroom to get what they missed during the pandemic.

Ajarmeh, the ministry of education secretary-general, told Jordan News that during the pandemic, his ministry was keen “not to stop schools, so the solution was through distant learning”.

“When the students returned to schools, there was an educational loss, so USAID, in partnership with the ministry of education, introduced a three-year program, which began in the second semester to compensate students for two academic years without affecting the current academic year,” he added.

He said the process focused on the basic concept of preparation for subsequent learning.

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