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Consultant for Research and Implementation Partnership: baseline study of migrant early childhood development

Terms of Reference 

 Consultant for Research and Implementation Partnership: baseline study of migrant early childhood development

 1. Background

Save the Children Thailand is implementing two (2) complimentary projects, Reaching Education for All Children in Thailand (REACT) and Expanding Improving Migrant Assistance and Protection in Thailand (Expanding IMPACT) utilizing Save the Children’s signature - International Development Early Learning Assessment’ (IDELA) tool that measures four child development domains: gross and fine motor development, emergent literacy and language, emergent numeracy and social-emotional development. SCI Thailand is seeking a partner to conduct a baseline study of early childhood development with approximately 600 migrant children aged 3.5 to 5 in Tak province. Tak Province is on Thailand’s western border with Myanmar.   Tak town (thesaban mueang) is the capital of Tak Province, and is comprised of nine districts (ampur) including five border districts: Tha Song Yang, Mae Ramat, Mae Sot, Phop Prah, and Umpang. All five border districts include sizeable migrant and ethnic minority populations, with migrants often moving between the border districts for work. Of these, Mae Sot is the most populous, containing Mae Sot City. Tha Song Yang has a sizeable population of Karen migrants and refugees, while Phop Prah and Mae Ramat have migrants working in the agricultural sector. Umphang includes a mixed population of Karen refugees and hill people indigenous to the area. In Mae Ramat migrants commonly work in rice fields, whereas Phob Prah is more mountainous and migrants commonly live in small groups and work on farms.

Research Questions

  • Does the REACT/Expanding IMPACT program impact child development?
  • Whose development shows or does not show improvement (e.g. equity[1])?
  • What difference exists between Thai and migrant children aged 3 to 6 in childhood development and rates of improvement? What does this mean in relation to social equity and access to basic services?
  • Who are the highest/lowest on the IDELA index?
  • What are we able to learn about ECCD interventions and children on the move in Thailand?
    1. Sub-questions: What is the attrition rate of migrant children connected to this study?
    2. What is the impact of the Early Literacy and Mathematics (ELM) at home activities for children unable to access pre-primary services?
    3. What is the impact of providing quality early learning opportunities in the languages that children learn at home?

The purpose of this partnership

This partnership is looking for a research partner to lead in administration of 600 caregiver surveys and 600 IDELA child assessments to capture the impact of the Expanding IMPACT/REACT project and contribute to global learning around this type of intervention. The research study will also explore social equity as it relates to the child development outcomes of Thai and migrant children aged 3 to 6 in Tak province – these results may inform advocacy.

PHASES OF Partnership

The partnership will be divided into 2 main stages, the baseline and end line research, contracts will be issued one year at a time. The first phase is detailed below.

Phase

Activity

Deadline

 

Phase 1

(July to December 2017)

 

Provide input to the project design

July 2017

Collaborate on research design, pilot and refine research tools, assemble research team and collaborate on training

July 2017

Training provided to research team with support from SCI inclusive of enumerators, data entry, and survey manager/lead

1 to 4 August 2017

Roll out of baseline research inclusive of comprehensive plan for safety of all personnel and child safeguarding

August – October 2017

Data-entry and cleaning of all the baseline data

 

November 2017

 2. Deliverables

  1. Initial Work plan
  2. Bi-monthly updated work-plan (every 2 weeks)
  3. Attendance at planning meetings
  4. Co-leading on the design of the project strategies and delivery structure with SCI
  5. Co-leading on the design of the research and learning component with SCI
  6. Input into research design & outline documents- background and scope of research, key questions, sampling strategy, research methods and tools etc.
  7. Refinement and piloting of research tools (including adaptation and translation by language group)
  8. Hiring and training of research team inclusive of: enumerator teams, data entry teams, & survey manager
  9. Managing the research process and collecting the data
  10. Baseline research
  11. Data cleaning and input into Baseline Report
  12. Support the projects advocacy strategy
  13. Support in applying for Ethical Review of study

3. Timeframe & Scope

Scope:

SCI has developed a guide for the adaptation of the IDELA child assessment into different languages. The guide is available in English and Thai. The partner will adapt and translate the child assessment into Sgaw Karen, Pwo Karen, and Burmese. There other supporting documents that require translation such as the caregiver survey, consent forms, and electronic assessment file. SCI will lead on a training for enumerators in refinement of the assessment tools – caregiver survey and child assessment. The baseline will be conducted in two (2) districts in Tak province – 1) Tha Song Yang and 2) Mueng Mae Sot. The partner will be responsible for recruitment and management of enumerator teams and coordinating the baseline survey in alignment with the research design. The sampling will be linked to migrant language groups as follows. A detailed baseline schedule will be developed in partnership aiming to capture a representative sample of children in each district; it is likely that it would include visiting 40 to 50 pre-primary service providers (e.g. MLCs, Thai schools, and ECCD centers).

 

Location

Language

Tha Song Yang

Mueng MST

Thai

Burmese

Sgaw

Pwo

Child assessment

200

400

200

140

140

120

Caregiver assessment

200

400

200

140

140

120

The expected timeline is as follows:

Baseline research conducted in 2017:

  • Recruit enumerators by 20 July
  • Enumerator training 1 to 4 August
  • Baseline implemented following the research design from August to October 2017
  • Input toward analysis and data cleaning related to the baseline report

4. Partner qualifications and profile

  • Local university
  • Survey manager will require at least master’s degree in education, research, social sciences or other related field
  • Expertise in qualitative and quantitative research methods.
  • Strong qualitative and qualitative data analysis skills
  • Experience conducting large scale household surveys or similar
  • Excellent understanding of government structures
  • Thai and strategy to recruit and manage enumerators/researchers with relevant languages for field research
  • English language proficiency desirable
  • Access to migrant communities in Tak province
  • Reputation of professional conduct

5. Management of research

  • Research design and strategy will be approved by Save the Children and the research partner
  • The main research tools will include a caregiver survey and IDELA child assessment provided by Save the Children
  • These tools will be piloted and refined prior to the full role out of the baseline research
  • The baseline research will include up to 600 children

Submissions for the sub-award

The submission must address the terms of reference and include:

  • Name and contact details of tenderer
  • Resume of the lead contact
  • An overview of the proposed research team and strategy for recruiting enumerators
  • An overview of previous experience working on survey adaptation and translation; community mobilization team; and strategy for encouraging participation of male and female caregivers
  • A detailed quote in THB and $US.

 

Close date for submissions: 27 July 2017

Please indicate in the subject as “Apply Consultant for Research and Implementation Partnership_(Name of candidate)”

Submissions should be addressed to: hr.thailand@savethechildren.org, Kate.McDermott@savethechildren.org, khem.krairit@savethechildren.org, & kaewta.sangsuk@savethechildren.org. 

 

Only shortlisted candidates will be notified.

“We need to keep children safe so our selection process reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.”

 

[1] In this study equity will be explored by gender, location, socio-economic status, legal status (migrant vs Thai citizen), and language community (Sgaw Karen, Pwo Karen, Burmese, and Thai).

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