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La fonction de production éducative revisitée dans le cadre de l'Education Pour Tous en Afrique subsaharienne : des limites théoriques et méthodologiques aux apports à la politique éducative

Abstract : The Coleman report (1966) was the first of numerous researches exploring quality of learning determinants analysis. With the Education Production Function (EPF), economists have greatly contributed to the extension of this research domain. Actually, empirical works are leading the field with important methodological debates which have fuelled controversies (Hanushek, 2003; Krueger, 2003). Thus, methodological issues have particularly rallied researchers' interests on empirical estimations, while academic researches on the renewal of the theoretical framework have remained scarce despite obvious bounds. Without contesting the validity of miscellaneous estimation problems and the necessity of other kind of researches as experimental approach, it seems that their consequences are not insurmountable if using a cautious interpretation of the EPF results.
The challenges of Education for All (EFA) in Africa and particularly primary universal education stress out the teacher issue. The need of a massive recruitment of teachers till 2015 raises tricky issues as financial sustainability, linked to socio-political problems, but also the profile of these new teachers. On this last point, a selected researches survey shows a relative convergence of results. According to the analyses, teachers' characteristics, such as training, length of service, status, etc. have limited effect on pupils' learning achievement. Teachers' status is a controversial subject in francophone Africa where recruitment of contractual teachers has increased during the last years. The results of empirical studies, as PASEC studies in primary education, do not confirm their responsibility in the weakening education quality. At the opposite, our analysis on Mali shows, in this particular case, a positive effect. Nevertheless, according to this analysis, status and other teachers' characteristics do not play a key role in quality of learning whereas disparities between classes and schools explain a large part of the differences noted in learning achievements between pupils. The literature supposes that it is due to the teacher effect (Bressoux, 2000). This assumption raises certain reserves. Analyses conducted in 11 African countries demonstrate clear higher values attributed to this effect than in developed countries. Measurement issues suggest cautiousness in the interpretation of the results. However, they show that disparities between classes and schools are at the heart of the issue credibly related to the quality of learning in numerous African countries. It underlines the crucial importance to manage the quality of learning with a specific attention paid to the disparities between schools in current management. Relevant indicators can be mobilized quite easily but their use for a result-based management still remains a prerequisite.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, January 29, 2008 - 5:34:36 PM
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Jean-Marc Bernard. La fonction de production éducative revisitée dans le cadre de l'Education Pour Tous en Afrique subsaharienne : des limites théoriques et méthodologiques aux apports à la politique éducative. Economies et finances. Université de Bourgogne, 2007. Français. ⟨tel-00223023⟩

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