Timothée Demont: timothee.demont[at]univ-amu.fr
Eva Raiber: eva.raiber[at]univ-amu.fr
In this paper we study an innovative education program designed to address two challenges common to many primary school children in developing countries: 1) the gap between their actual knowledge and the level targeted by teachers in class, 2) the lack of support for their studying and learning practice outside of school hours. The program, implemented in India, combined an in-school pedagogical intervention with the creation of out-of-school study groups. We design a randomized experiment with factorial design to assess the effectiveness of the overall program as well as of its individual in-school and out-of-school components. Results show that the overall program significantly increased test scores in both mathematics and language. However, when implemented independently, the two components have no impact. Our analysis highlights two major challenges – low participation in the study groups and inputs substitution in the schools – and provides evidence of the importance of the timing and the intensity of the interventions. Overall, our findings indicate that learning programs should aim at strengthening the role of multiple actors involved in the children’s learning process, both in school and out of school.