Monday, January 24, 2011

Competition Tool To Reforming Private Schools

 The student organisation affiliated to the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist has sent inimical signals to private school operators in the country. The All Nepal Independent Students Union (Revolutionary) - the pro-Maoist student outfit that recently elected new central office bearers - has decided to ask the government not to allow the registration of new private schools and will oppose tooth and nail should the government go for it. Moreover, the student outfit has asked the Maoist leaders, in particular, not to send their children to private schools as this flouts the norms and principles upheld and espoused by the party to discourage the privatisation and commercialisation of education. Even the teachers who are employed in government-funded educational institutions send their children to private schools.

There is no denying that private schools, as alleged by the pro-Maoist student organisation, have given rise to several anomalies and social distortions, which need to be rectified and corrected. However, the moot point to be considered is why have the distortions afflicted the education sector incessantly? The issue to be sorted out is whether it is the private sector’s participation or the lack of an effective mechanism to deal with the educational institutions run and operated by the private sector that is at the root of the problem. Perhaps it is not private initiation and partnership but the lack of an appropriate mechanism that can be faulted for the anomalies seen in the education sector. A properly enabled and regulated private sector and its capital investment can contribute meaningfully in raising the quality of educational institutions.

Experiences from the developed world have shown that the best and specialised educational institutions have been the results of private management backed by a sound and supportive policy of the government. At a time when the government-aided schools are in poor shape and have not shown any good results, posing hurdles on the way of private sector participation in education development will be counterproductive in this country. In order to reform the education sector it is necessary to ensure that the schools funded by the state coffer perform better while putting pressure on the private schools to correct the distortions and reform.

source:rising nepal