Costing Pakistan Reading Program Interventions

PRP conducted a pilot cost-effectiveness study with a sample of 75 teachers in 48 schools and 4 regions of Pakistan. The study aimed to determine how much PRP interventions cost and whether the investments are worth the cost, as shown by the degree to which they led to changes in teachers’ behaviors that are expected to impact students’ reading outcomes. The study included a costing component in the Nowshera district program and a small effectiveness study exploring the effect of four different variations of the program on teachers’ general instructional practices, literacy instruction, and classroom environment. 

Results indicate that the overall cost of establishing and operating the PRP model in a cluster of schools within the Nowshera district was $649,129, approximately $3,121 per school and $39 dollars per child. This estimate is highly sensitive to scale because of the presence of district-level fixed costs. With regard to the costs of different components of PRP, the study found that materials cost $41,452, with an average cost of $199 per school and $2 per child. TIGs cost $103,003, with an average cost per school of $495 and $6 per child. Face-to-Face 

Trainings for Teachers cost $106,282, with an average cost per school of $511 and $6 per child. School Support Visits cost $103,730, with an average cost per school of $499 and $6 per child. 

Comparing the observed changes in the instructional practices of teachers in schools that received the full packet of PRP interventions to those that received only some ingredients, we concluded that face-to-face trainings and materials have a positive effect on teachers and are worth the investment, but school support visits have a negative effect and are not worth the cost. Data from interviews and focus groups suggest that teachers who did not receive school support visits found ways to overcompensate for the lack of school visits and performed better than teachers receiving visits by relying more heavily on their networks of peer support.

The Airbel Impact Lab at IRC is a team of researchers, strategists and innovators committed to the accelerated design, rigorous evaluation and cost-effective scaling of the most impactful solutions supporting people affected by crisis.