GESS is an inclusive programme that is transforming the lives of a generation of children in South Sudan – especially girls and those in the margins of society– through education.The second phase of the Girls’ Education South Sudan (GESS) programme is running between May 2019 –and March 2024.

South Sudan, the newest country in the world, has some of the worst educational indicators, with education for girls being particularly poor. Only one girl in ten completes primary education and girls comprise just one-third of the secondary school population. There are many barriers (cultural, financial, physical, quality) that are preventing children from enrolment and completing school. The GESS programme aims to contribute to removing these barriers and enable a transformative societal change through education.

The GESS results chain is as follows:

The impact of the Programme: to continue (building on success of the first phase GESS) to transform the life chances of a generation of South Sudanese children, particularly but not exclusively, girls, through education, while stabilising priority areas of the education sector and concurrently seeking to deliver improved quality education. The impact may therefore be permanent, although a long-term impact on the sustainability of the education sector requires positive changes in the context and the political will of the Government of the Republic of South Sudan.

The outcomes of the Programme: an improvement in girl’s educational attainment from that already achieved in the first phase of the Programme; building further gains on school enrolment, reducing barriers to education and promoting equity in access for all children.

The outputs of the Programme will be:

  • Output 1: Behaviour Change Communication (BCC) to garner support and change attitudes in favour of education for all.
  • Output 2: Cash Transfers (CTs) to individual girls to supplement household income to cater for direct and indirect costs of education.
  • Output 3: Capitation Grants (CGs) to schools to supplement school revenues to help them provide a conducive learning environment.
  • Output 4: Quality Education (QE) including Learning Groups, Accelerated Learning and Livelihoods for adolescents previously without access to education to improve learning outcomes through support to education managers, teachers, school management committees and mentoring of learners.
  • Output 5: Knowledge, Evidence, Research and Learning (KERL) to build a knowledge base for support to girls’ education, including use of the Schools’ Attendance Monitoring System (SAMS); reporting on teacher and learner attendance; and academic research into the barriers and solutions to education for both girls and learners with disabilities in South Sudan.

The Ministry of General Education and Instruction (MoGEI) oversees the GESS programme, supported by Consortium Partners which provide technical advice. The Partners include the lead, Cambridge Education of the Mott MacDonald group; BBC Media Action; Leonard Cheshire; Montrose; and Windle Trust International. At the State and County levels, the State Ministries of General Education and Instruction (SMoEs) take the lead in programme implementation, supported by partner organisations, the GESS State Anchors.