Okuu Keremet! (Learning is Awesome!)

Speeches Shim

1,687 target schools and 82 public libraries will receive total of almost 900,000 copies of new books.
1,687 target schools and 82 public libraries will receive total of almost 900,000 copies of new books.

Duration: November 1, 2019 – October 30, 2024

Budget: $18,997,874

Implementing Partner: RTI International

Key Partners: Ministry of Education and Science; Ministry of Culture, Information, and Tourism; Kyrgyz Academy of Education; Republican Institute for Advanced Training and Re-Training; regional teacher training institutes

Activity Location: Nationwide

Okuu Keremet! (Learning is Awesome!) is a project designed to help improve learning outcomes in reading and math among 300,000 students in grades 1-4 in 1,687 target schools in the Kyrgyz Republic.


In partnership with the Ministry of Education and Science (MOES) of the Kyrgyz Republic, Okuu Keremet! will focus on improving the quality of teaching reading and math to early grade learners. The project will also provide students with high-quality supplementary learning materials and work with the government on improving the quality of education for every child.  



  • In February of 2021, Okuu Keremet! launched training for more than 13,500 primary grade teachers, 1,500 librarians and a range of school leaders on effective methods of teaching reading. Online and offline training sessions are based on special training modules developed by the project. The project plans to train the educators on new approaches in teaching math as well.
  • Ten math and five advanced reading modules have been developed in Kyrgyz, Russian, Tajik and Uzbek languages. The math modules are being piloted in 30 schools in Bishkek City and Chui Oblast. These activities are expected to accelerate children’s learning and ensure that they succeed in reading and math at the primary level of education. It’s a part of the project’s partnership with the Ministry of Education and Science to develop the professional skills of teachers through on-the-job training. USAID will also work with academic institutions to improve teacher education before they enter the profession.
  • In November 2020, 1,065 target schools and 82 public libraries received a total of 285,000 copies of new books. Access to quality reading and math materials inside and outside school is key to improving education for early grades. By the end of the project, 1,687 target schools and public libraries throughout the country will receive almost 900,000 copies of children’s books. 
  • To date, Okuu Keremet! has adapted 250 children’s books from English to Russian and Kyrgyz and created 90 original books across a range of genres. Forty local authors and illustrators have been trained to produce quality children’s books under the project’s “CreateKitep” Initiative. All reading resources will be developed in students’ first languages, appropriate to their age, reading level and diverse backgrounds.
  • The project also works with children, parents and communities to enhance out-of-school learning. A weeklong reading campaign dedicated to the National Literature Day in December and a social media campaign for the World Read Aloud Day in early February motivated more than 4,000 children and parents to read together. They participated in video contests and live streams with celebrities that reached up to 30,000 users on Facebook and Instagram.
  • USAID plans to regularly conduct reading and math assessments to measure how effective these approaches are. The first round of assessments will take place in April 2021 to measure children’s reading and math skills. Okuu Keremet! also conducted studies to shed light on gender equality and social inclusion in primary education. The findings will be used to inform programming and will contribute to materials that reflect diversity and equity. 

Last updated: March 10, 2021

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