[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Education

a) Access: ALL schools to be private (citizen run) and partially 
funded by other citizens (tax payers) who gain social
benefit from the positive outcome of an educated citizenry. If I 
educate a rural woman, I gain by having a few lesser
children in my over-crowded country, by having more skilled workers, 
by having better democratic institutions. Therefore I
a taxpayer am willing to pay for providing education, but NOT to a 
government bureaucracy. That money must go STRAIGHT to
the school.

Utkarsh: I think I agree with Arvind that private sector will never 
operate in areas where the population can not afford.
Until unless governement just pays to that private company. Then 
government is still running the management because they
still control the money.

I would suggest that we do adopt part of what is done in the US. Let 
Panchayats nominate a supervisor at the district level
for a term of 2 years. Let this school supervisor be the answerable 
authority to all management responsibility in the
district to the Panchayat. Supervisor should has powers (to recommend 
to panchayats) of appointments/removals Principals to
the schools in the district. Principles should have the powers to 
recommend selection/removal of teachers to the District
Supervisor.  Let state government allocate the money (let me say real 
money and we put systems to track all the money
before we even start any change)to Panchayats for running the schools.  
A fixed percentage of local taxes should go to the
district education budget. Every year all Panchayats should propose a 
budget to the state for all financial requirements
for the education in the district.

Once earlier I had posted that a world bank study in primary education 
suggested that to improve literacy at the primary
level, we should provide free lunches and better quality of education.

I would suggest that like in the US federal government should provide a 
budget for a lunch program all over the country.

b) Standards: We DO NOT need any government agency to set standards. 
Education is valuable to me as a private citizen and
you and I - citizens - will set up institutions to assess standards. 
Today, Microsoft certification is far more crucial in
getting a job than having got a degree from an Indian university. The 
private sector knows best what standards are needed.
Let the private sector/ businesses set up their own standards 
institutions and their own exams to certify people who meet
these standards. 

Utkarsh: No business has any need to put out a certification for elementary
 education. Even in the US they have realized
that. Bodies like NCERT or other NGOs should be assigned to develop these 
standards at the primary and secondary level.

University education is a whole lot different bear. I agree with Sanjeev 
that at the University level, let the universities
define their own standards and businesses should offer their own 
certifications. But at the university levels we should
promote autonomy. Government bueraucats should not run these universities. 
A board of accomplished individuals should
appoint a President to manage a university. State Government should only 
give a certin percentage of the tax money to the university and walk 
away from any other meddling in the university education. 

c) Ratio of teachers to students: That is none of the business of government. 
All we need to do is to provide a suitable
subsidy to remote schools, and provide free LAND to set up any number of 
schools and universities in the cities. Let the
management committees decide the details. Government could - if it so 
insists - set up "desirable" standards or ratios. Then: get out of the way.

I agree with the Sanjeev that we should let NGOs define all standards. I 
also agree that government should get out of the
day-to-day management of primary and secondary education. As I mentioned 
above local government should be held responsible
by the citizens electing these officials.

Thank you for reading rather long mail. All of us might have different 
ideas. I am just trying to put mine out. 



"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; 
and the realist adjusts the sails."     
-William Arthur Ward

This is a posting to India_Policy Discussion list:  debate@indiapolicy.org
Rules, Procedures, Archives:            http://www.indiapolicy.org/debate/