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Written Paper

Different Paths to Student Learning : Good Practices and Student Performance - Identifying Success from Municipal School Systems in Brazil  [2008]

World Bank;


The importance of education to the socioeconomic and political development of nations is widely discussed in the education policy literature. This study seeks to identify the good policies and practices that lead students in some municipal school systems in Brazil to obtain better results than would be expected based purely on socioeconomic factors. This report is divided into four sections. The next section, section two, explains in detail the rationale and motivation for the study. Section three explains the conceptual framework for the qualitative field research. It provides a succinct but detailed explanation of the methodology used, elaborating on issues such as the definition of study samples and the design of the field research instruments. Section four presents the main results of the analysis and identifies the principal education policy factors that appeared to help some municipal school systems obtain better-than-expected Prova Brasil results. Section five presents 12 municipal 'success stories' in a loose narrative format. These narratives serve as examples of how different combinations of good practices can translate into results in a variety of actual situations. Lastly, we offer some final considerations in closing.