Monitoring and Evaluation Function

Monitoring and evaluation are synergistic and interdependent:

Monitoring is a continuing function undertaken by EAC and its partners, which uses systematic collection of data to provide management and the main stakeholders of ongoing project or program with early indications of success or lack thereof, against the progress in the use of allocated resources. Thus monitoring requires the regular tracking of inputs, activities, outputs, outcomes and impacts of education activities at the project or program level.

Evaluation is the periodic assessment of either completed or ongoing project or program to determine the extent to which they are achieving stated objectives, or the extent to which change (success or failure) in the targeted results can be attributed to its interventions. It involves a rigorous process of using predetermined performance measures to collect information about a project or program to determine its merit or worth.

Monitoring and evaluation enable all key stakeholders of a project or a programme to use the evidence to influence future decisions.

The information in this section outlines how EAC carries out its monitoring and evaluation activities.

The Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) function in Educate A Child (EAC) was designed with the inception of the programme in 2012. It has evolved and matured over the last four years to meet the demands of a growing programme. At the onset of the programme, EAC contracted with thirteen implementing partners in eight countries, and one multi-country project across 12 countries and since has expanded to 59 projects in 48 countries.

M&E is a foundational component of the entire Educate A Child program. While the M&E unit is the hub, other units are essential spokes on the wheel. The validity, accuracy, quality and timeliness of data is a shared responsibility among EAC staff. Every unit within EAC monitors project progress, engages in quality assurance, contributes to data compiled in the database, and utilizes results from M&E. For example, the operations department ensures the quality and accuracy of financial reporting against budgets and compliance with legal agreements. In some cases, operations personnel conduct field site monitoring visits to monitor project financial systems and verify expenditures. The technical department is heavily engaged in due diligence field visits and site monitoring visits to ensure project compliance. The engagement department tracks and responds to incoming EOIs and records status of proposal development. The technical team also monitors the progress of project implementation through partner technical reports and tracks the accuracy and validity of data provided in technical reports. They also apply rigorous scrutiny and historical accuracy with data reported for communication and publication purposes, serving as an additional check on data quality. The M&E Department works with the Technical Department to ensure solid M&E project system design for project data collection, monitoring and reporting. It also, provides the data cleaning and reconciliation for project online reports to the EAC database. Regular reports for management include data compiled from the database. The M&E department also provides overall guidance for partners on designing data collection systems and reporting data. The project site monitoring visits are organized by the M&E team, including those conducted by EAC staff and those contracted with Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC). The M&E unit also develops consultant scopes of work for case studies, external evaluations, and research.  Sample external post-award reviews are conducted by EAA internal audit as well as contracted with PwC.

The EAC M&E system uses qualitative and quantitative instruments in determining progress towards goals. It is a results-based management system tied to intended outcomes for EAC as a whole and individual project contributions. The overall system design is provided in the M&E Plan, developed in 2013 and included in Annex A. The EAC M&E function is involved from incoming requests for partnerships until project completion, providing quality assurance throughout the process. Annual reports are made against EAC Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to EAA. A recent KPI progress report is found in Annex B.

The M&E system operates on two levels, M&E at the project level, and M&E at the organization level.