Link Community Development

Improving the quality of education in Africa

Link Community Development Malawi

Where we work

About Link Community Development Malawi

In 2015, Link Community Development Malawi facilitated Malawi’s first ever National Education Standards that will be used by every primary and secondary school in the country (approximately 7,000 in total). Link is also supporting the development of a digitised integrated school improvement system so that data collected in schools by inspectors and advisors can be efficiently and accurately shared, collated, analysed and disseminated across all government levels.
“Previously learners reached standard 8 without being able to read and write. Now standard 1 can do it” (parent in Dedza District)  

Key facts

Opened: 2006
Districts: Dedza; Michinji (previously in Mulanje) 
Focus: School improvement; local language and literacy; community engagement; social accountability; building capabilities for sustainability

Case Studies:


Support to the Inspection and Advisory Services

Teachers discuss school performance with a Primary Education Advisor

The overall objective is to improve the provision of quality education to the children of Malawi by supporting the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology to develop (1) a cadre of professionally trained, knowledgeable inspectors, able to effectively inspect schools and to monitor school improvement throughout Malawi, and (2) a cadre of professionally trained, knowledgeable advisors, able to effectively support school improvement throughout Malawi.


INSPIRE means Integrated School Performance Improvement, Review and Engagement. The overall objective of INSPIRE is to develop integrated planning, multi-stakeholder accountability and the provision of effective support to bring about improvements in the performance of Malawian schools. This project is the culmination of Scottish Government and Link’s investment in monitoring school performance since 2006 and it represents a real opportunity for sustainable and scalable activity which can improve the quality of monitoring and support of schools, at the same time enabling wider community participation in education decision making. Central to the project are the rights and responsibilities of parents, informed by the school standard and school performance information and the opportunity to discuss school performance at school and district level.


In partnership with RTI International we are increasing parental and community engagement in supporting student reading. This is part of the Malawi Early Grade Reading Improvement Activity (MERIT) which is designed to assist the Government of Malawi’s efforts to improve reading skills of Malawian students in Standards 1-4 nationwide. 

Increasing Participatory Governance in Education in Malawi

Children at Malawi primary school

Building on our successful School Review and School Improvement Planning work, this practice-based enquiry will help us to understand why some community members are excluded from the school improvement cycle, and how we can help these marginalised groups to play a more active role in their schools.  



Funder: Open Society Foundation

Total funding: $144,940

Project dates: September 2016 - March 2018

OSCR Scottish Charity Registrar