Millennium Challenge Corporation BRIGHT Program Evaluation

Dec 20, 2016

BRIGHT children classroom

From 2005 through 2012, the Millennium Challenge Corporation funded the Burkinabé Response to Improve Girls’ Chances to Succeed (BRIGHT) program to improve education outcomes for children—particularly girls—in Burkina Faso. Mathematica Policy Research evaluated the impacts of this program 10 years after it started. The findings show promise for interventions such as BRIGHT to make positive long-term impacts on girls as they grow into adults. Key findings include the following:

  • BRIGHT boosted the rates of primary school completion and enrollment in school while decreasing employment and marriage rates for young women. For girls and women ages 13 to 22, rates of primary school completion increased by 13.5 percentage points, enrollment increased by 10.3 percentage points, and youth employment and marriage rates declined by 5.5 and 6.3 percentage points, respectively.
  • BRIGHT raised enrollment rates and test scores for both girls and boys, with larger impacts on girls. Girls’ enrollment increased 5.4 percentage points more than boys’ did, and girls’ test scores increased by .08 standard deviations more. 
The BRIGHT program involved the construction of primary schools in 132 villages across 10 provinces and the provision of complementary interventions designed to increase girls’ enrollment in school. The new schools offer “girl-friendly” features such as housing for female teachers as well as separate latrines and take-home rations for girls. Complementary interventions include free textbooks, school supplies, school canteens, take-home rations, and mentoring for young girls. Read the full report.

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