The impact of a safe learning environment in schools on students’ learning outcomes: evidence from Tanzania
Quality Assurance in Education
Article publication date: 2 July 2020
Issue publication date: 10 March 2021
This study aims to evaluate the effect of school safety on standardized learning outcomes for primary-age students in Tanzania, identifying causal direction and magnitudes.
Key dependent variables include standardized learning outcomes in English, reading fluency and math addition problems; while independent variables are the perception of school safety from head teachers. An ordinary least squares estimation explored the determinants of student performance when controlled for school and family specific characteristics. These results were then verified through the quasi-experimental method of propensity score matching, estimating the effect of school safety on learning outcomes and accounting for any misspecifications in the treatment or outcome models.
Results show statistically significant and negative effects of an unsafe school environment on learning outcomes for both reading and math.
As head teachers reported students’ perceptions of school safety, it may be underreported.
Donors, policymakers and other stakeholders need to consider school safety issues as a barrier to learning in policy design and program implementation.
This research was funded by USAID and is adapted from a larger study which included additional countries Kibriya et al. (2018). The authors are indebted to USAID and its personnel for their invaluable input. However, any shortcoming of the article is solely attributed to the authors’ limitations.
Kibriya, S. and Jones, G. (2021), "The impact of a safe learning environment in schools on students’ learning outcomes: evidence from Tanzania", Quality Assurance in Education, Vol. 29 No. 1, pp. 15-28. https://doi.org/10.1108/QAE-11-2019-0124
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited