Lessons and Impacts of a Remote Early Childhood Education Program in Hard-to-Access Settings in Lebanon: A Randomized Controlled Trial
This study, led by Global TIES for Children at New York University, is the first evaluation of a remote early childhood education (ECE) program for families affected by conflict and crisis and the second of the effect of short-term (shorter than 3 months) ECE programming. It evaluates the impact of an 11-week remote early learning program (RELP) delivered alone and in combination with Ahlan Simsim Families (ASF), a parenting support program. The study population is Syrian (96%) and Lebanese (4%) caregivers with 5-6 year-old children in hard-to-access areas of Lebanon where there is little to no other access to ECE. RELP and ASF were implemented by the International Rescue Committee (IRC) in partnership with Sesame Workshop as part of the initiative called Ahlan Simsim ("Welcome Sesame" in Arabic)2. The IRC and Sesame Workshop also collaborated on the research. We conducted both causal impact analyses (comparing the program models, RELP and RELP + ASF, to a waitlist control group) and an embedded qualitative study with teachers, caregivers, and program staff.