LSE: Impact of our Secondary School Readiness Programme

Assessing the impact of our Secondary School Readiness Programme


Our Secondary School Readiness Programme was developed to bridge the learning gap between primary and secondary education in India. Using a combination of teacher training and teaching and learning resources, the programme helps students progress to the level of learning appropriate for the class they are in. It aims to give students a better chance of passing their Class 10 board exams, usually taken when they’re aged 15 to 16 years old, which can have a big impact on future education and employment.

In April 2017, we started to look at the best way to assess the impact of the programme. First, we commissioned the London School of Economics to analyse student test scores. They comparing pre- and post-intervention results in environmental studies, science, social science, English, maths, and Hindi/Odia.

  • Students who took part in the Secondary Schools Readiness Programme showed marked improvements in their test results.
  • The programme had the biggest impact on language.
  • LSE’s study gave us proof of concept to commission a full randomised control trial in 2018 involving 300 secondary schools.

Key findings

  • Students experienced marked improvements in their scores before and after the programme was delivered
    • In Sambalpur, the average gain in test scores is highest in Odia (9.7% points) and lowest in science (1.2% points).
    • In Hardoi, the average gain is highest in Hindi (13.3% points) and lowest in environmental studies (3.03% points).
  • There is a positive correlation between test score gains and attendance across the whole of the programme
    • The association is robust for mathematics and weakest for science.


This study helped us decide how to best evaluate the Secondary Schools Readiness Programme. We went on to commission Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) South Asia to rigorously evaluate the programme’s impact on student learning, and its cost effectiveness.

For more key findings, download our research pilot report

“The LSE’s analysis provided proof of concept that the Secondary School Readiness Project could bridge the learning gap for secondary school students. This gave us the confidence to fund JPAL South Asia to conduct a full randomised impact evaluation.”


Dr Christine Oliver, Head of Research, Kusuma Trust UK

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