Primary Schools

Why is this intervention necessary?
Over the past 26 years the number of BRAC primary schools has grown exponentially. We started working at this level in 1985 with the opening of 22 one-room schools providing three years of schooling up to Grade III, which was later extended to grade V. The main objective of non-formal primary schools is to develop a school model for the underprivileged/primary school dropout children, especially girls, and to complete the five year primary school syllabus in four years.

BRAC also works with other development organisations to expand education opportunities for disadvantaged children through partnering with them and providing them with technical and financial support to implement BRAC’s Non-formal Primary Education model with adaptation as needed. These collaboration activities are called Education Support Programmes.

Key features
•    The one teacher school is operated by the same teacher for the same cohort of children for the entire period of four years and delivers lessons in all subjects.
•    The school timings are flexible and are fixed according to needs.
•    Children do not have to pay any fees and there are no long holidays
•    Little homework or no homework as most of their parents are not capable  of  assisting them
•    Children with Special Needs receive corrective surgeries along with devices like wheelchairs, hearing aids, glasses and ramps
•    Children belonging to ethnic communities receive class lectures and course materials in their own languages up to grade two so that they can overcome language barriers and cultural gaps
•    BRAC develops textbooks and other materials for up to Grade III and government textbooks are used in Grades IV and V
•    Students are taught about social values and their rights and responsibilities coupled with basic financial education to empower them
•    BRAC primary school graduates are being tracked by BRAC for further study

What's the linkage with Government schools?
Bangladesh Government has allowed BRAC Primary School students to appear for Shomaponi Examination which is a pivotal examination that occur at the end of the fifth grade class.

The effectiveness of this programme was recently on display when the graduates of the non-formal schools were well ahead of the country average when it came to passing grade for the primary school examination. At 97 percent success rate in 2009 and 99.54 percent in 2010, they were well ahead of their peers who completed formal school taking an additional year.

How do we ensure quality of teaching?
A typical BRAC teacher would be a female community member with 10 years of schooling. Teachers undergo an initial 12-day training course in order to repeat basic information on teaching and learning and to enhance their teaching abilities. They subsequently participate in monthly, subject-based refresher courses.

a.    Education Support Programme (ESP)
b.    Formal & Community School
c.    Shikkha Tari: Boat School
d.    Shishu Niketan: Home for Children
e.    TBS (Tracking of BRAC Graduates at secondary schools)

Quick Facts:
Total Primary School: 22,618
Number of ESP partners (NGO): 441
Total students: 670,815 (63.93 percent females)
Total course completed students to date: 4.95 million (65.53 percent females)
Transfer to formal schools to date: 4.66 million (65.21 percent females)
Transfer rate of total course completed students: 94.14 percent
Total teachers: 22,699

Read Stories:
Innovative Steps tTowards Primary Education in Haor Area
Akhi studies hard to be a teacher.
Alam, a Non-formal Primary School Student, Now Runs His Own.

Related Videos:
Mitali Dango: BRAC School Teacher
BRAC Primary School Students Singing.