While local and state-level assessments have been conducted in the past years, a country-wide education-specific data collection effort such as the Joint Education Needs Assessment (JENA) remains a gap. Although there is an Education Management Information System (EMIS) in Sudan, it is outdated (2017-2018), only covers Basic Education and does not offer a complete analysis of the functionality of hardware components (handwashing stations, latrines, etc). Further, with COVID19-related school closures on March 15, 2020 and the postponement of the reopening of schools until November, the education landscape has shifted significantly. To ensure all school-aged children can continue their learning, there is a high need to collect information on learning losses as well as to ensure school infrastructure will be safe for students to return to school when schools reopen.
The purpose of a JENA is to ensure the Education Sector has up-to-date quantitative and qualitative data (including, crucially, the perspectives of children, parents and teachers) to enable partners and coordinators to plan a coherent, relevant, impactful and accountable humanitarian response. A JENA may cover topics such as hardware and rehabilitation needs, the functionality of water and sanitation infrastructure, student dropout rates, parental engagement, stakeholder perceptions of education quality, school safety and security, or teacher training needs. The exact terms of the JENA are defined through the Assessment Working Group (AWG) after conducting a Secondary Data Review (SDR).