The Asian Development Bank (ADB) approved a grant of $12.4 million to support Bangladesh’s Fourth Primary Education Development Program that aims to provide quality education to all children from pre-primary to grade 5.
A grant agreement of $12.40 million was signed in Dhaka on Monday between the Government of Bangladesh (GoB) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).
The grant proceeds from Education Above All (EAA) Foundation, Qatar Fund will be used through ADB to facilitate in achieving an efficient, inclusive and equitable primary education system delivering effective and relevant child-friendly learning to all children from pre-primary through grade 5.
Sharifa Khan, secretary of the Economic Relations Division (ERD) on behalf of the GoB and EdimonGinting, country director of the Bangladesh Resident Mission on behalf of ADB signed the agreement.
Senior officials of the government, ADB and concerned agencies were present at the signing ceremony.
The Ministry of Primary and Mass Education is the executing agency of the programme and the Directorate of Primary Education (DPE) is the implementing agency and the programme implementation period is 2019-2024.
ADB is one of the largest multilateral Development Partners of Bangladesh extending assistance to the country since it became a member of ADB in 1973. ADB's total loan to Bangladesh till now is approximately $28,074 million and total grant is about $553.4 million.
The development assistance mainly focused on power, energy, local government, transport, education, agriculture, health, water resources, governance and financial sectors of Bangladesh.
The project has increased enrollment and reduced dropout rates across the country, but this trend is lower among disadvantaged groups such as children from small ethnic communities, children living in slums, and children living with disabilities. Disparities between schools, and between rich and poor children, still persist.
Although the program has helped Bangladesh make considerable progress on meeting its education targets enshrined in Millennium Development Goals 2 and 3, much work remains to be done, said ADB Senior official.
This additional funding will help deepen ongoing reforms, scale up successful project interventions, and complete already scaled-up activities, he mentioned.
To deliver an efficient, inclusive, and equitable primary education system as well as relevant child-friendly learning to Bangladeshi children through Grade 5, the projects aims to continue building the capacity of both students and teachers, reduce disparities in access to education, decentralize oversight of the primary education system, and improve program planning and management.