Impact of New Horizons for Primary Schools on literacy and numeracy in Jamaica 1999-2004

Impact of New Horizons for Primary Schools on literacy and numeracy in Jamaica 1999-2004

Evaluation of New Horizons programme to improve school achievement in Jamaica

This document examines how the New Horizons for Primary Schools Program (NHP) implemented in 1998-1999 affected student learning achievement. It also discusses the data requirements for more rigorous analyses. The NHP was rolled out for approximately 10% of the most poorly performing schools in Jamaica, and was designed to improve the quality of teaching in these primary schools, to raise literacy and numeracy levels, to increase school attendance and to strengthen school management.

Main findings of the study include:

  • schools in NHP showed higher performance at the lower ends of two tests of achievement measured at Grade 6: writing and mathematics
  • factors associated with higher literacy and numeracy in 2004 included the presence of a good quality School Improvement Plan (School Development Plan) in 2003, an active PTA, and higher performance in 1999
  • students in schools with more qualified and more experienced teachers in Grades 1-6 scored higher than those with less experienced and less qualified teachers
  • students in schools on multiple shifts achieved less than those on single shift, while students in rural schools also scored less well than those in urban schools.