USAID Non-Formal Education Program

Speeches Shim

USAID Non-Formal Education Program

2015-2017 • $4.68 million • 1,680 students • 28 new centers • 300 educators • Partner: Questscope



Beginning in 1998 with an innovative street education program targeting drop-outs, Questscope began to develop its participatory methodology behind non-formal education (NFE). At that time, more than 80,000 young Jordanians had no alternative educational options. In 2003, Questscope, an Amman-based INGO focusing on youths’ social and emotional development, and the Ministry of Education (MOE) developed a national-level 24-month NFE program. Upon graduation, this program enabled students to receive a certificate of completion from the MOE. Since 2003, this unique GOJ-NGO cooperation has allowed more than 12,000 children to benefit from Questscope’s Participatory Learning Methodology© (PLM©), by participating in NFE. Completing the NFE program provides youth with a pathway back into formal education through homeschooling and opens up opportunities for professional vocational training.

The influx of Syrian refugees also has put additional strain on an already struggling public education system, making it even more difficult for out-of-school Jordanians and students at-risk of dropping out to complete their education. In 2014, UNICEF reported that 21,234 12-15 year old Jordanians were not enrolled in school.

Youth without basic educational qualifications take the lowest-skilled, lowest-paid jobs, are exposed to labor exploitation, resort to negative coping mechanisms such as street hustling, and risk the social stigma of being labeled as “failures” or “criminals.” In these contexts, quality education interventions can provide youth and adolescents with a path forward toward a positive and productive future.


Over the next two years, the USAID Non-Formal Education (NFE) Program will provide at least 1,680 out-of-school youth – including Syrian refugees – in Jordan with access to a quality education. Through the establishment of 28 new NFE centers and building the capacity of educators in dozens more, the NFE Program will improve educational and social outcomes for youth in Jordan. The NFE Program will be implemented by Questscope, in collaboration with the MOE and local community actors. Questscope’s NFE program is grounded in a specialized Participatory Learning Methodology© that actively engages students in their own learning and facilitates positive relationships between learners and educators. Over the past ten years, Questscope’s NFE program has enrolled over 12,000 youth throughout Jordan.



  • 28 new NFE centers will be established and equipped throughout Jordan in collaboration with Questscope and the Jordan Ministry of Education.
  • Local community members will serve as Outreach Mobilizers at each NFE center to enroll new students and organize local community committee meetings.
  • Every week, enrolled students will participate in ten hours of NFE programming, focused on their individual educational and socio-emotional needs.
  • Learners will play an active role in shaping their own classroom environment and the topics covered during NFE sessions.
  • An online and in-person Community of Practice will build the capacity of and establish networks among NFE Facilitators.


  • Through three cycles of NFE over the course of the two-year program, at least 1,680 students will be given equitable access to a quality education, including over 650 Syrian refugees. Students who complete the program will receive a MoE certificate of completion, enabling them to pursue further educational and vocational training opportunities.
  • Over 300 educators and community members will collectively have access to 56 days of training—including separate modules on topics that include outreach and advocacy training, conducting needs assessments, child protection, training of trainers, and Questscope’s unique Participatory Learning Methodology©.
  • Parents will meet on a regular basis with NFE Facilitators to monitor their child’s progress in the program. Also, community members will participate in local committee meetings through the NFE program to promote their active involvement in this alternative education initiative.
  • Through Technical and Steering Committee meetings, and in collaboration with the Jordan Ministry of Education and Questscope NFE Facilitators, the NFE curriculum will be updated and enhanced. Also, four NFE manuals will be published and disseminated to all NFE centers. Provision of these manuals and updated curriculum to NFE practitioners will increase their capacity to better implement NFE.