Central Square Foundation to focus on Foundational Learning

New Delhi, September 20, 2018: Central Square Foundation (CSF), a nonprofit philanthropic organization today announced its new foundational learning strategy with the aim of ensuring early reading and math skills for all children in India by class 3. After evaluating the foundation’s work since inception, talking to practitioners, government and several organizations working in education and looking at global evidence, CSF has narrowed down on improved foundational learning as a primary goal for the next four years.

Announcing the new strategy, Ashish Dhawan, Founder and Chairman, Central Square Foundation, said, “The Indian government has made tremendous progress in improving access to schooling and they are now turning their attention towards student learning outcomes. Foundational learning in early years is a key gateway skill to quality education in school and to fully realize one’s potential. It can help bridge the wide learning gaps that exist today and is directly correlated to increased workforce participation and better quality of life for India’s human capital.”

To achieve the foundational learning goal, CSF will engage with the education ecosystem to make foundational learning a priority while emphasizing on better measurement of learning outcomes in early years. The foundation will provide technical advisory and make available public goods such as high-quality research and knowledge material. In addition, CSF will also work with partners to identify and scale cost-effective solutions based on relevant pedagogical interventions, leveraging technology and key system enablers, as well as support disruptive innovations that can help improve foundational learning.

CSF is working closely with partners on this effort. Earlier this year, CSF started a content partnership with Google.org and has also received external funding from Steadview Capital. CSF has now partnered with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to invest in providing education systems with better research, evidence, tools, and approaches to improve student learning outcomes. The Gates Foundation will bring $16 million worth of funding over the next four years that will add to the philanthropic contribution of ₹100 crore for the same period by CSF Founder and Chairman Ashish Dhawan.

“Achieving the long-term goal of ensuring that all children attain foundational learning is an ambitious one. We are excited with the synergies that the Gates Foundation’s global education strategy will bring towards our shared goals – this partnership will enable us to strengthen our capacity for building research, knowledge and evidence, and will help design and generate more public goods”, Ashish Dhawan, further added.

Central Square Foundation believes that good quality education underpins the concept of inclusive growth. It is imperative to invest in foundational learning to ensure that all students are given equal opportunity to learn well in schools so that they are better prepared to improve their quality of life.

About CSF:
Central Square Foundation is a non-profit organization working with the vision of ensuring quality school education for all children in India. Since 2012, we have been partnering with the government, private sector, nonprofit organizations and other ecosystem stakeholders to improve the learning outcomes of children, especially from low-income communities. We are driven by our mission to enable the school education system to adopt solutions that are scalable, sustainable and effective, so that all children get equal access to opportunities needed for leading a better life.

For Media Queries, please contact Disha Agrawal at disha@centralsquarefoundation.org

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