In November 2019, 2,800 students from 70 secondary schools of Uzbekistan will take part in pilot assessment in line with early grade assessment (EGRA) and early grade mathematics assessment (EGMA) as part of an Uzbek-American project.
On 14 November 2019, the ceremony of launching pilot assessment in line with EGRA and EGMA with the participation of the Minister of Public Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan Sherzod Shermatov and Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States Daniel Rosenblum was held at Tashkent secondary school No. 238.
EGRA and EGMA are scientifically based models for assessing basic reading and literacy skills, as well as numeracy for diagnosing systemic gaps in teaching in elementary grades and determining optimal solutions to address them.
Assessments are conducted by the Ministry of Public Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan (MoPE) in collaboration with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This methodology is the first component of a US$50 million five-year development goal agreement signed between the MoPE and USAID on 28 September 2019.
It is planned that EGRA and EGMA assessments will be conducted in 12 regions of Uzbekistan in all 7 languages of instruction and English.
Pilot studies will be conducted over two weeks in 70 schools of Uzbekistan and will cover 1,400 second-graders and 1,400 fourth-graders.
The main goal of the pilot assessment is to pilot the tools for each language, test the data collection protocol, and also practice assessors.
For the assessment, groups were created, which included 5 specialists.
It is planned that full-fledged assessments in schools in Uzbekistan will be carried out in May 2020. Assessments will be conducted over 10 school days in 940 schools, which will be chosen at random. The assessment will cover 11,280 second-graders and the same number of fourth-graders. About 12 students from each class will participate in EGRA and EGMA assessment.
The final results of the EGRA and EGMA studies will be published in August 2020.
The Minister of Public Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan Sherzod Shermatov noted that until today we did not have an objective system for assessing knowledge. Now the Ministry of Public Education of the Republic of Uzbekistan is working on the implementation of projects based on international experience and assessments. For the first time, we conduct an assessment of the knowledge of our students on the basis of international systems. These studies will allow you to compare the results of Uzbekistan with data from other countries and find the best ways to solve them. In this regard, I urge directors and teachers to ensure the objectivity of the assessment, as the data will help identify problem areas in the education system.
US Ambassador to Uzbekistan Daniel Rosenblum said that the EGRA and EGMA are designed to provide simple, low-cost, and powerful measures of literacy and numeracy. I want to emphasize that the use of the word “assessment” is a very specific choice. This is not a test of an individual pupil’s knowledge, of an individual teacher’s ability to teach, or an individual school director’s management of a school. There are no passing or failing grades. Much like how a doctor examines a patient before prescribing treatment, the assessments are examining the condition of early grade reading and math learning and the results of these assessments will be used to develop new curricula, teaching methods, and approaches that will be tailored to specifically improve the learning outcomes of all pupils in Uzbekistan.