National Consultant for Scoping of Multigrade Teaching Practices in Nigeria, (Remote with travel to field Offices)

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential. 

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.  And we never give up. 

Job no: 571504
Position type: Consultant
Location: Nigeria
School/Unit: Nigeria
Department/Office: Abuja, Nigeria
Categories: Education

For every child, education 

In Nigeria, UNICEF works in a complex humanitarian and development setting to fulfill and protect children’s rights in partnership with the government, civil society, children, and families.  UNICEF Nigeria is one of the largest UNICEF Country Offices globally – click the link to learn more about UNICEF in Nigeria:

How can you make a difference? 

Background and Purpose of Activity/Assignment:

Nigeria is in the depths of a learning crisis. Approximately, 3 out of 4 children in Nigeria cannot read with meaning or solve simple math problems. Fewer than 1 in 20 of the poorest children and 1 in 7 children in rural areas have foundational skills . Only 1 in 4 children (ages 7–14) in Nigeria demonstrate foundational skills. 73% of 10-year-olds cannot read a simple text with understanding; with only 27% of 7-to 14-year-olds having literacy skills and 25% of the same age group having numeracy skills.

The lack of foundational literacy and numeracy skills affects children’s ability to learn high-order skills and increases their risk of repeating classes or dropping out, thereby fueling the out-of-school phenomenon. This is further reflected in national literacy rates where the average national literacy rate for Nigeria is 62% – nearly half of women (47%) and nearly one-quarter (29%) of men cannot read or write .

The learning crisis is stalling significant gains that Nigeria has made in getting more children to attend school. Multiple challenges affect the quality of education in Nigeria. If we don’t confront these, we risk stalling progress and losing gains already made for children.

The learning crisis is due to systemic supply & demand barriers related to education service delivery. At the Basic Education level, low and inequitable participation in early learning, with just 63% of five-year-olds engaging in organized learning; poor teaching and a lack of teaching and learning materials contribute to low learning achievement.

Other systemic challenges include limited investment in education financing, inadequate and under-prepared workforce, inadequate spaces for learning, and an insufficient number of teachers, leading to highly disproportionate Pupil-Teacher ratios of 1:124 against a national average of 1:55 in most of the schools, particularly in the North East. With such a high Pupil-Teacher ratio and limited learning spaces, the quality of teaching and learning in most parts of Nigeria is compromised. Yet, given the high demand for education, exploring various approaches to deliver this basic need becomes paramount.

The use of multi-grade teaching has been embraced in various parts of the country as an approach to address the high demand for education. Multi-grade teaching in Nigeria has been described as the situation in which a teacher teaches more than one class at the same time either in the same classroom or in a different classroom. This style of teaching is common in almost all rural areas of Nigeria with large classes being a reality for the vast majority of learners. This situation is aggravated by the fact that for many pupils enrolled in schools in rural areas, teachers have to combine a number of classes. Since education at the basic level is of great concern to the government, large classes are more prevalent in public schools than in the private sector. Multi-grade teaching emerges as a vital approach to address the above challenges. Some of the key benefits of multi-grade teaching include:

  • Overcoming teacher shortages, allowing schools to effectively utilize the limited number of qualified teachers available in the region.
  • Enhances access to education, particularly in areas where there is a scarcity of schools.
  • Provides opportunities for peer learning and collaboration, with students from different grade levels working together, assisting and learning from one another.
  • Multi-Grade teaching encourages flexibility and adaptability in instructional practices. Teachers can utilize a range of teaching methods, materials, and resources to engage students across different grade levels simultaneously.
  • It is a cost-effective approach, especially in resource-constrained settings. It optimizes the use of resources, including teaching materials, classroom spaces, and teacher training.

Scope of Work:

UNICEF will engage a consultant to (1) conduct a desk review on effective multi-grade teaching and (2) a rapid assessment of multi-grade teaching models in Nigeria. Specifically, the Consultant will:
1. Conduct a desk review: This will entail a thorough study on multi-grade teaching approaches in the context of Nigeria; comparative scenarios between multi-grade teaching methodologies in Nigeria and other countries and provide recommendations on effective multi-grade teaching.

2. Conduct a rapid assessment in selected schools across states: The assessment will provide relevant information and data on the status of multi-grade teaching in Nigeria, including scope/scale, best practices, challenges, and gaps. The assessment will also include a mapping of partners implementing multi-grade teaching in the region as well as ongoing initiatives at State and Federal levels.

3. Develop a policy brief on multi-grade teaching: Based on the findings of the assessment, the consultant will develop a policy brief with evidence-based recommendations that will guide the structuring of a multi-grade teaching strategy, including the design of multi-grade teaching activities.

The geographic scope of the assessment will be across various geopolitical zones of the country. The consultant will be expected to propose a sampling frame and a detailed methodology in consultation with UNICEF during the inception stage.

To view the full job description, please refer to the attached… TOR for Scoping of Multigrade Teaching in Nigeria_Final.docx

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have… 

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in  Education, development studies or its equivalent is required.
  • A minimum of five years of relevant professional experience in  in implementing or managing Education interventions is required.
  • Knowledge and experience in teaching and learning approaches (e.g., implementing multigrade interventions, Teaching at the right level) an asset.
  • Fluency in English is required. Proficiency in Hausa and/or Kanuri and Fulfulde languages will be considered as an added advantage.

Required skills:

• Experience in conducting education research studies.
• Excellent communication and advocacy skills.

Other skills and attributes:

• Experience working across various states of Nigeria;
• Experience in conducting education-focused Assessments.
• Good command of written and spoken English.
• Experience working with Nigerian government offices.
• Experience working on educational programmes at a large scale

For every Child, you demonstrate… 

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, Accountability, and Sustainability (CRITAS). 

 To view our competency framework, please visit  here

 UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.

UNICEF offers reasonable accommodation for consultants/individual contractors with disabilities. This may include, for example, accessible software, travel assistance for missions or personal attendants. We encourage you to disclose your disability during your application in case you need reasonable accommodation during the selection process and afterwards in your assignment. 

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check. 


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process. 

Applicants must submit their financial and technical proposals along with this application. Application without these will not be considered.Use this form to provide your financial proposal Download File All-Inclusive Financial Proposal Form.docx.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws. 

The selected candidate is solely responsible to ensure that the visa (applicable) and health insurance required to perform the duties of the contract are valid for the entire period of the contract. Selected candidates are subject to confirmation of fully-vaccinated status against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) with a World Health Organization (WHO)-endorsed vaccine, which must be met prior to taking up the assignment. It does not apply to consultants who will work remotely and are not expected to work on or visit UNICEF premises, programme delivery locations or directly interact with communities UNICEF works with, nor to travel to perform functions for UNICEF for the duration of their consultancy contracts. 

Advertised: Apr 26 2024 W. Central Africa Standard Time
Application close: May 10 2024 W. Central Africa Standard Time

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