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Zambia - Expenditure and Service Delivery Survey (Education)

Description Questionnaires | Findings Related Resources | Publications

A combination expenditure tracking and service delivery survey (ESDS) was fielded in the education sector in Zambia in 2002. 

The first component analyzes the flow of public expenditure through the delivery system, from the Ministry of Education to the schools. In doing so, the study will provide valuable insights into strengthening capacity building at lower levels of the educational system.

The second component examines how the funding that reaches the school, either as cash transfers or the delivery of educational materials, affect test scores of pupils. The education sector in Zambia offers a unique opportunity to implement this strategy, by building on the work of the Examination Council of Zambia through the National Assessment Survey (NAS 2001).

The study proposes to retest a set of children tested under the NAS 2001 with the same test to measure changes in test scores over time. The need for retesting stems from selection issues arising from the correlation of public expenditure with unobserved school and pupil attributes. This part of the study deals with problems arising from omitted variables and selection bias, and sheds light on the transformation of educational inputs into test score outcomes.

The third component relates school and household characteristics to examine the impact of educational funding on enrollment.

ContactJishnu Das *

Project description:Delivering Education in Zambia: A Guide to Expenditure and Service Delivery Surveys, August 2002. Adobe Acrobat PDF [216 KB]


Test scores and inputs
District Education Office Questionnaire, Part 1 (PDF)
Provincial Education Office Questionnaire, Part I (PDF)
Head-Teacher Questionnaire  (PDF)
Head-Teacher Rosters  (PDF)

Head-Teacher Matching Roster  (PDF)
Pupil Matching Roster  (PDF)
Teacher Questionnaire  (PDF)

Public expenditure tracking to the schools
General School Questionnaire (23 pages)
District Education Office Questionnaire, Part 2 (PDF)
Provincial Education Office Questionnaire
, Part 2  (PDF)

Community Information  (PDF)

Household Community Roster  (PDF)
Household Questionnaire  (PDF)

Sampling notes 
Schools  (PDF)
Households  (PDF)

Interviewer Manuals
Community Roster Instructions  (PDF)
General School Questionnaire: Surveyor  (PDF)
Household Survey Manual: Instructions for Enumerators  (PDF)
Summary Manual for Households: Further Notes for Enumerators  (PDF)
Teacher Questionnaire Manual  (PDF)


Public and Private Funding of Basic Education in Zambia: Implications of Budgetary Allocations for Service Delivery, Jishnu Das, Stefan Dercon, James Habyarimana, and Pramila Krishnan. Africa Region Human Development Working Paper No.62 , March 2004. (Online content)

This report presents findings from a survey of 182 primary (grades 1-7) and basic (grades 1-9) schools carried out in Zambia in 2002. It describes and analyzes resource flows to these schools from three sources: rule-based funding from the center, discretionary funding from district and provincial educational offices, and household spending on education.

Legislatively rule-based funds reached schools exactly as earmarked. The rule-based component of funding was highly progressive as the same amount was disbursed to all schools irrespective of enrollment; since small schools tend to have poorer student bodies, the rule-based allocation per pupil translated to more funding for poorer students. 

Discretionary funds, controlled by provincial and districts education offices, reached only 25 percent of schools. The discretionary funds were wealth neutral: even shares were distributed to schools with poor and nonpoor students. 

Household educational expenditures show that nonfee expenditures by the family on children are seven times the corresponding expenditure on fees, making them the main source of inequalities in private expenditure. Once private expenditure is factored in to the analysis the nonprogressive nature of the public education funding system worsens: the share of educational expenditures for the poorer 50 percent of the population declines from 40 to 34 percent. Furthermore, when we examine substitution between private expenditures and public funding, we find strong evidence that households decrease expenditures when public funding increases. 

Although public funding could address inequalities in educational spending by progressive allocation across villages and schools, the desired impact of such redistributions may be less than imagined due to the crowding-out of private expenditures. The report suggests that increases in funding may not be the optimal way to improve educational attainment. It might be more beneficial to concentrate instead on providing inputs that households cannot supply on their own, such as high-quality teachers.

Related Resources

  • Public expenditure tracking surveys in education: Peru, Uganda and Zambia
    by Ritva Reinikka & Nathanael Smith, Ethics and corruption in education.
    Paris: Institute for Educational Planning, 2004. Adobe Acrobat PDF [1606 KB].
    Public expenditure tracking surveys, or PETS, now implemented in a number of countries including Cambodia, Ghana, Peru, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia have proven to be key instruments in determining how much of education resources originally allocated actually reach the schools.

(Please use the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to view PDF PDF files)

The following policy research working papers are drawn from the World Bank's institutional archives. Each link opens a page with an abstract of the document and several download options. Other related documents not stored in the institutional archives.

Update: January 31, 2007


WPS3602Teacher shocks and student learning : evidence from ZambiaDas, Jishnu; Dercon, Stefan; Habyarimana, James; Krishnan, Pramila2005/04
WPS3249Equity in educational expenditures : can government subsidies help?Das, Jishnu2004/03
WPS3217When can school inputs improve test scores?Das, Jishnu; Dercon, Stefan; Habyarimana, James; Krishnan, Pramila2004/02
29085Public and private funding of basic education in Zambia : implications of budgetary allocations for service deliveryDas, Jishnu; Dercon, Stefan; Habyarimana, James; Krishnan, Pramila2004/01

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