Project Highlights
Improving Primary Schools
Basic Education I & II Projects
Monitoring Primary Schools
Innovations in Decentralization and “Escuelas Activas” (IDEA)

1999 to 2003
$13.7 million
Chief of Party:
  Antonietta Harwood
[email protected]
Project Director:
  Carmen Siri
[email protected]

The Innovations in Decentralization and "Escuelas Activas" (IDEA) project is designed to address priority needs of education in Peru, particularly in relation to educational decentralization and democratic behavior learning in rural schools. In particular, the IDEA project is designed to assist the Peruvian Government and civil society organizations to develop and improve their ability to implement effective educational decentralization policies at the national and local levels, as well as to improve the quality of rural multi-grade schools in San Martín Province.

USAID/Peru’s basic education program aims to ensure active citizen participation at the national and local levels in the development and implementation of policies to promote the decentralized local management of quality basic education services and resources in selected geographic areas. In partnership with the Ministry of Education (MED), the National Council for Education (CNE), the regional and municipal government authorities, public- and private-sector entities, and members of civil society, the IDEA project will provide assistance leading to the strengthening of institutions and programs, promotion of democratic processes, and development of the capacity of school directors, councils, parents, and other key actors to manage quality schools.

The project will focus on actions that improve the quality of basic education programs and develop girls’ and boys’ capacities to become constructive actors in the democratic, social, and economic development of their communities. The project will transform “passive school-communities” into “active school-communities” that exemplify the use of active learning methodologies in the classroom and the active participation of parents and the communities in classroom learning activities, school life, outreach, and management. Active learning methodologies are particularly effective in increasing girls’ school participation – their enrollment and completion as well as their academic achievement and their ability to actively contribute to development.

The project will support the newly formed National Council on Education (Consejo Nacional de Educación – CNE) and regional decentralization entities and will build on the extensive experience of public and private organizations in Lima and in San Martín. During Phase I, the IDEA project will focus on 70 schools in all provinces of the department of San Martín, with the aim of developing an approach to decentralized local management of quality basic education the Government of Peru can build on as it initiates its nation-wide decentralization of the education system to begin in 2005. The Program will engage in systematic consultative processes intended to create involvement and ownership in these schools as “provincial decentralization laboratories.”

Planned activities include:
Establish Consultative Committee and a Technical Advisory Committee
Conduct regular meetings with Peruvian stakeholders
Contract prominent NGOs to develop key project deliverables
Implement a systematic communications strategy
The promotion of local management of quality education in San Martín activities include:
Selection, provision and setting up of 70 schools to become “active schools”
Establishment of five resource centers
Participatory development and validation of learning materials for students, teacher guides and parents modules
Training of teachers and other users in the “active school” approach
Creating networks for future “active school” expansion

Other AED Projects in Peru
Environmental Education and Communication IQC (GreenCOM II), USAID, 2001 to 2006
LINKAGES: Breastfeeding and Related Complementary Feeding and Maternal Nutrition Program, USAID, 1996 to 2006
Behavior Change, Innovation, State of the Art Activity (The CHANGE Project), USAID, 1998 to 2004
Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance (FANTA), USAID, 1998 to 2003
Measure Three Project- Dissemination and Utilization of Data, USAID, 1997 to 2003
Consortium for Advancing Technical Assistance for Leadership and Strategies in Family Planning and Reproductive Health (CATALYST), USAID, 2000 to 2005