The Impact of School Infrastructure on Learning : A Synthesis of the Evidence
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The aim of this report is to review current research studies on how school infrastructure affects children’s learning outcomes and to identify key parameters that can inform the design, implementation, and supervision of future educational infrastructure projects. At the same time, this document also aims to identify areas where the evidence is currently less strong and where there is the potential for the further exploratory work. School infrastructure constitutes a large component of the World Bank’s education investment projects. The Bank’s World Development Report 2018 titled “Learning to Realize Education’s Promise” stresses the importance of making schools work for all learners and focuses on the need to ensure the high quality of education. The report emphasizes the need to guarantee the efficient use of public resources in delivering the maximum benefits of education to all children. To ensure that investments in school infrastructure achieve the maximum positive impact on learning, this report suggests that a comprehensive set of questions needs answers: Do all children actually have access to a place at school?, Do the school buildings provide a safe and healthy environment?, Are the existing learning spaces optimally designed for learning?, Does the design of the school foster current pedagogy and community engagement?, How can the school infrastructure be designed to evolve sustainably over the longer term? This report brings together the key findings from studies of international practice as a first step towards finding optimal solutions to the issues raised by these questions and maximizing the benefits of school infrastructure.