Gillard Increases Efforts For Education

For a lot of people wishing to move into Australia, education would be one of the biggest factors that have affected their decision to go. Indeed, Australian education has long been considered as one of the best in the world today. This is why countless of people arrive in the country each year to enroll in the schools here.

And this is also one of the reasons why newly elected Prime Minister Julia Gillard is also bent on further improving the country’s current educational system. It is interesting to note that, before being elected as Prime Minister, Gillard served as Education Minister under the government of former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd (whom she replaced before being reelected for a second term. Thus many believe that she has the capabilities to handle the country’s current education problems.

During the elections, Gillard had promised voters that she will keep education one of the central priorities of her government. Many analysts believe that this is one of the things that made her win the elections. And many are waiting as to what she will do in order to keep that promise.

Hence, right after her inauguration as the new Prime Minister of Australia, Gillard has started to to tackle the most important issues pertaining to the country’s education. One of the first things that she did was to reorganized all the ministers that are concerned with education. In particular, Gillard renamed the Ministry of Jobs, Skills, and Work Place Relations, adding Tertiary Education to its functions. The said ministry is headed by Senator Chris Evans.

The move to add the title of Tertiary Education to Evans’ position, was initiated upon the request of the tertiary education sector. They have previously asked for a more focused effort to deal with the industry’s needs. However, government insiders said that the new title will not have a significant effect on Senator Evans’ current work in education.

On the other hand, Peter Garrett has been assigned as the new Minister for Schools and Early development. He will handle all the task relating to school relations, development and regulation for primary and secondary schools, as well as childhood development.

Gillard also said that she will further study the foreign education sector in order to better direct. As of current, the foreign education industries is experiencing a significant downturn of enrollments due to the recent changes in immigration policies. Gillard said that she will consult with the industry to find out ways of attracting more students from abroad, while at the same time, encouraging them to head to areas that would meet the countries needs.

Education Graph in India

With lot of learned men passing through the intellectual land of India, it would not be wrong to say that India is a gifted land of knowledge and learning. With the ancient Nalanda- the globally famous University in Bihar, the trend and necessity has now led to the birth of universities and institutions like Delhi University, IIT, IIM, NIIT, AIIMS and the like. Whereas earlier the high dignitary gurus used to oversee the functioning of education centers, we now have specially assigned education ministers to maintain educational law and order. In a nutshell, Education in India has changed, and mostly for the better. With a keen interest to achieve 100% literacy rate, few Indian states have achieved the benchmark and are raising the bar for imparting higher education to all. If we talk about the Indian Education System, it is divided in the following stages:

Nursery
Primary
Higher Secondary
Senior Secondary
Graduation
Post Graduation

These various stages of Education, set by the Indian Education Ministry, are instrumental in an individual’s growth. Thus to ensure consistency in the overall development of the individual, first 12 years of education are made basic for all. Graduation and Post Graduation though depends upon person’s academic interest. The various fields that are available for a graduate and/or post graduate are: – Engineering and technology, teaching, medicine, law, agriculture, veterinary, polytechnic and others. The crazes for education has become so much that students are learning the courses through distance learning and through various courses available online.

Many online coaching centers and institutions have built up to provide students with platforms that can hone their skills. Advanced degrees are available online, such as MA, MS, BA, BS, PhD. MBA, etc. The vogue/frenzy of getting educated is so much that many online universities/institutions have achieved government accreditation, so that scholars can be rest assured of the authenticity of their degrees. And with the subsequent rise in demand and supply of education, the colleges/ institutions/ universities are also trying their best to mark a nail in the fence and to live up to the competition, they are advertising in all extremes.

Various non-profit organizations like Teach India from The Times of India group have also come up with teaching campaigns. Their aim is to give a vision to each and every child of India to read, write and speak in their interest, and subsequently in the interest of the nation.

Millennium Education Development – Ways To Achieve

Dr. Tooley: His conclusions on Private Education and Entrepreneurship

Professor James Tooley criticized the United Nations’ proposals to eliminate all fees in state primary schools globally to meet its goal of universal education by 2015. Dr. Tooley says the UN, which is placing particular emphasis on those regions doing worse at moving towards ‘education for all’ namely sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, is “backing the wrong horse”.1

On his extensive research in the world poorest countries such as Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, India, and China, Dr. Tooley found that private unaided schools in the slum areas outperform their public counterparts. A significant number of a large majority of school children came from unrecognized schools and children from such schools outperform similar students in government schools in key school subjects.2 Private schools for the poor are counterparts for private schools for the elite. While elite private schools cater the needs of the privilege classes, there come the non-elite private schools which, as the entrepreneurs claimed, were set up in a mixture of philanthropy and commerce, from scarce resources. These private sector aims to serve the poor by offering the best quality they could while charging affordable fees.3

Thus, Dr. Tooley concluded that private education can be made available for all. He suggested that the quality of private education especially the private unaided schools can be raised through the help of International Aid. If the World Bank and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) could find ways to invest in private schools, then genuine education could result. 4 Offering loans to help schools improve their infrastructure or worthwhile teacher training, or creating partial vouchers to help even more of the poor to gain access to private schools are other strategies to be considered. Dr. Tooley holds that since many poor parents use private and not state schools, then “Education for All is going to be much easier to achieve than is currently believed”.

Hurdles in Achieving the MED

Teachers are the key factor in the learning phenomenon. They must now become the centerpiece of national efforts to achieve the dream that every child can have an education of good quality by 2015. Yet 18 million more teachers are needed if every child is to receive a quality education. 100 million children are still denied the opportunity of going to school. Millions are sitting in over-crowded classrooms for only a few hours a day.5 Too many excellent teachers who make learning exciting will change professions for higher paid opportunities while less productive teachers will retire on the job and coast toward their pension.6 How can we provide millions of more teachers?

Discrimination in girls access to education persists in many areas, owing to customary attitudes, early marriages and pregnancies, inadequate and gender-biased teaching and educational materials, sexual harassment and lack of adequate and physically and other wise accessible schooling facilities. 7

Child labor is common among the third world countries. Too many children undertake heavy domestic works at early age and are expected to manage heavy responsibilities. Numerous children rarely enjoy proper nutrition and are forced to do laborious toils.

Peace and economic struggles are other things to consider. The Bhutan country for example, has to take hurdles of high population growth (3%), vast mountainous areas with low population density, a limited resources base and unemployment. Sri Lanka reported an impressive record, yet, civil war is affecting its ability to mobilize funds since spending on defense eats up a quarter of the national budget.8

Putting children into school may not be enough. Bangladesh’s Education minister, A. S. H. Sadique, announced a 65% literacy rate, 3% increase since Dakar and a 30% rise since 1990. While basic education and literacy had improved in his country, he said that quality had been sacrificed in the pursuit of number.9 According to Nigel Fisher of UNICEF Kathmandu, “fewer children in his country survive to Grade 5 than in any region of the world. Repetition was a gross wastage of resources”.

Furthermore, other challenges in meeting the goal include: (1) How to reach out with education to HIV/AIDS orphans in regions such as Africa when the pandemic is wreaking havoc. (2) How to offer education to ever-increasing number of refugees and displaced people. (3) How to help teachers acquire a new understanding of their role and how to harness the new technologies to benefit the poor. And (4), in a world with 700 million people living in a forty-two highly indebted countries – how to help education overcome poverty and give millions of children a chance to realize their full potential.10

Education for All: How?

The goal is simple: Get the 100 million kids missing an education into school.
The question: How?

The first most essential problem in education is the lack of teachers and it has to be addressed first. Teacher corps should be improved through better recruitment strategies, mentoring and enhancing training academies. 11 Assistant teachers could be trained. Through mentoring, assistant teachers will develop the skills to become good teachers. In order to build a higher quality teacher workforce; selective hiring, a lengthy apprenticeship with comprehensive evaluation, follow ups with regular and rigorous personnel evaluations with pay-for-performance rewards, should be considered.12 Remuneration of teaching staff will motivate good teachers to stay and the unfruitful ones to do better.

Problems regarding sex discrimination and child labor should be eliminated. The Beijing Platform for Action (BPFA), for example, addressed the problem of gender inequality. BPFA calls on governments and relevant sectors to create an education and social environment, in which women and men, girls and boys, are treated equally, and to provide access for and retention of girls and women at all levels of education.13 The Global Task Force on Child Labor and Education and its proposed role for advocacy, coordination and research, were endorsed by the participants in Beijing. The UN added that incentives should be provided to the poorest families to support their children’s education.14

Highly indebted countries complain on lack of resources. Most of these countries spend on education and health as much as debt repayments. If these countries are with pro-poor programs that have a strong bias for basic education, will debt cancellation help them? Should these regions be a lobby for debt relief?

Partly explains the lack of progress, the rich countries, by paying themselves a piece dividend at the end of the Cold War, had reduced their international development assistance. In 2000, the real value of aid flows stood at only about 80% of their 1990 levels. Furthermore, the share of the aid going to education fell by 30% between 1990 and 2000 represented 7% of bilateral aid by that time. 15 Given this case, what is the chance of the United Nations’ call to the donors to double the billion of dollars of aid? According to John Daniel, Assistant Director-General for Education, UNESCO (2001-04), at present, 97% of the resources devoted to education in the developing countries come from the countries themselves and only 3% from the international resources. The key principle is that the primary responsibility for achieving ‘education for all’ lies with the national governments. International and bilateral agencies can help, but the drive has to come from the country itself. These countries are advised to chart a sustainable strategy for achieving education for all. This could mean reallocation of resources to education from other expenditures. It will often mean reallocation of resources within the education budget to basic education and away from other levels. 16

A Closer Look: Private and Public Schools

Some of the most disadvantage people on this planet vote with their feet: exit the public schools and move their children in private schools. Why are private schools better than state schools?
Teachers in the private schools are more accountable. There are more classroom activities and levels of teachers’ dedication. The teachers are accountable to the manager who can fire them whenever they are seen with incompetence. The manager as well is accountable to the parents who can withdraw their children.17 Thus; basically, the private schools are driven with negative reinforcements. These drives, however, bear positive results. Private schools are able to carry quality education better than state schools. The new research found that private schools for the poor exist in the slum areas aiming to help the very disadvantage have access to quality education. The poor subsidized the poorest.

Such accountability is not present in the government schools. Teachers in the public schools cannot be fired mainly because of incompetence. Principals/head teachers are not accountable to the parents if their children are not given adequate education. Researchers noted of irresponsible teachers ‘keeping a school closed … for months at a time, many cases of drunk teachers, and head teachers who asked children to do domestic chores including baby sitting. These actions are ‘plainly negligence’.

Are there any means to battle the system of negligence that pulls the state schools into failing? Should international aids be invested solely to private schools that are performing better and leave the state schools in total collapse? If private education seems to be the hope in achieving education for all, why not privatize all low performing state schools? Should the public schools be developed through a systematic change, will the competition between the public and the private schools result to much better outcomes? What is the chance that all educational entrepreneurs of the world will adapt the spirit of dedication and social works – offering free places for the poorest students and catering their needs?

Public schools can be made better. They can be made great schools if the resources are there, the community is included and teachers and other school workers get the support and respect they need. The government has to be hands on in improving the quality of education of state schools. In New York City for example, ACORN formed a collaborative with other community groups and the teachers union to improve 10 low-performing district 9 schools. The collaborative won $1.6 million in funding for most of its comprehensive plan to hire more effective principals, support the development of a highly teaching force and build strong family-school partnerships. 18

Standardized tests are also vital in improving schools and student achievements. It provides comparable information about schools and identifies schools that are doing fine, schools that are doing badly and some that are barely functioning. The data on student achievement provided by the standardized tests are essential diagnostic tool to improve performance. 19

The privatization of public schools is not the answer at all. Take for instance the idea of charter schools. As an alternative to failed public schools and government bureaucracy, local communities in America used public funds to start their own schools. And what started in a handful of states became a nationwide phenomenon. But according to a new national comparison of test
scores among children in charter schools and regular public schools, most charter schools aren’t measuring up. The Education Department’s findings showed that in almost every racial, economic and geographic category, fourth graders in traditional public schools outperform fourth graders in charter schools. 20

If the government can harness the quality of state schools, and if the World Bank and the Bilateral Agencies could find ways to invest on both the private and the public schools – instead of putting money only on the private schools where only a small fraction of students will have access to quality education while the majority are left behind – then ‘genuine education’ could result.

Conclusion

Education for all apparently is a simple goal, yet, is taking a long time for the world to achieve. Several of destructive forces are blocking its way to meet the goal and the fear of failure is strong. Numerous solutions are available to fix the failed system of public schools but the best solution is still unknown. Several challenges are faced by the private schools to meet their accountabilities, but the resources are scarce. Every country is committed to develop its education to bring every child into school but most are still struggling with mountainous debts.
‘Primary education for all by 2015’ will not be easy. However, everyone must be assured that the millennium development goal is possible and attainable. Since the Dakar meeting, several countries reported their progress in education. In Africa, for example, thirteen countries have, or should have attained Universal Primary Education (UPE) by the target date of 2015. 23 It challenges other countries, those that are lagging behind in achieving universal education to base their policies on programs that have proved effective in other African nations. Many more are working for the goal, each progressing in different paces. One thing is clear; the World is committed to meet its goal. The challenge is not to make that commitment falter, because a well-educated world will be a world that can better cope with conflicts and difficulties: thus, a better place to live.

Uniform Education an Education Revolution in Tamil Nadu

Introduction:
Education can act as a powerful tool for reducing poverty and unemployment and achieving a sustained human development. When we compared our country education with other developed/developing country, the education in our country is not suitable to the current situation/practical life. All over the world governments are strictly follow the procedure of generating libraries along with schools, colleges etc. because the emperor Napoleon said the “Build up libraries otherwise we would build up prisons”.

Generally in all the countries are understand the importance of higher education. In 1980s American president Ronald Regan take several steps to improve the higher educations. In a survey, among the 10 world’s best universities, 9 universities are situated in America. Most of the countries are including the basic education as a human right. In our India itself the education quality in corporation schools and private institutions are having huge differences. For instance the education system in institutions like IIM, IIT is differing from other institution. IIM an IIT institutes students are having more future benefits like employment, salary etc. rather than the other institutes. The syllabus difference between Tamilnadu and Kerala. We can give much more examples to prove in equality in our education system.

According to human resource development department report in our India only 77% of the students pursuing their higher secondary studies. In which 61.6% of the students stop their studies in between of higher secondary. The total no. of schools, colleges is increased slightly when compared to previous years but the education quality is down fall. Even though the students well educated they can’t able to get a job because of non practical syllabus in many education institutions. It is the right time to introduce the “education revolution” through uniform education.

Uniform education:

In current situation only the richest students are able to get quality education in metric and private schools. The government of Tamil Nadu going to introduce uniform education system in eliminates the in equality in education. In 1960’s Gothari commission insist government of India to introduce uniform education in every states and also the committee stressed to increased the allocation of finance to the education with that committee’s recommendations the government of India introduced “Sharva Shiksha Abiyan”. But the result is not up to the level. The Government of Tamilnadu comes forward to introduce the uniform education with the recommendation of Muthu kumaran committee. Uniform education will reduce the burden of the school children through reducing the no. of books and notes and also. It will make pull stop to the indirect collection of amount from the children by way of using text books. It is the good thing in one side but in other side the quality of government school not up to the mark of private schools.

Uniform education’s other important content is crating or building near by schools to children’s. But the government of Tamil Nadu doesn’t give any matters regarding the nearest school systems. The Government of Tamil Nadu also failed to include the medium of instructions as Tamil. Because Mr.Muthukumaran committee strongly stressed about providing of education in the mother tongue. The education minister also failed to include the very important content of uniform education is appointing sufficient no. of teachers to each children in the Government Schools.

Recommendation:

From the point of view of us and also from the point of view of experts, we wished to suggest. Some recommendation and we expect something from the Tamil Nadu education minister to develop the rural children education rate.

1. The Government must develop the infrastructure facilities. The Government schools are not having enough infrastructure facilities like in private schools.

2. It most of the rural schools the teacher student ration in too low (5 classes: 2 teachers). Merely introducing common syllabus we can’t expect uniform education development in all schools. The state Government should came forward to allocate more finance to the education development.

3. Most of the politicians like PMK leader Ramadoss expect the State Government should come forward to provide LKG & UKG education to all the rural students. Because, all the urban area students are going in the Ist standard after completing these courses. But most of the rural students are joined with out these courses. So far four committee are arranged to analyze Indians education position. All these committees are recommends one thing severally that is “nearby schools with mother tongue common schools”.

4.A childe should get its education with out going long distance. For that Government should construct more no. of schools in rural areas. So for the Government didn’t explained about the nearby schools construction.

5. Government school teachers are getting more salary than the private school teachers. But the pass percentage is too lower than the private schools. Government didn’t give more attention to praise the teachers and also punishing then when they are mislead.

6. Every year Chennai Municipality receives Rs. 70 crores as education tax. As per I April 2009 situation the idle amount is Rs. 120 crores with his amount the Chennai municipality can improve the 250 corporate schools to star category. Government should concentrate on spending collected amount towards school education development.

7. Even though the Government schools are giving free lunch, no fees, free uniforms and free text books, still most of middle a low class peoples are interested to get the appoint form the private schools. The Government should give been attention towards this actions it should find the reason.

8. Most of the rural students are stopped their education in between (nearly 70% of the students stop their education with in 10th STD) classes. The reason is poverty and also the schools infrastructure education plan, test formation and also job opportunity from the education. The Government should try to change the education system of our state. The every student should be assured with job opportunity.

9. According to latest report from 1000 students only 50-60 students are having the capability of getting jobs. It arises due to non job relevance syllabus and also lack of library facilities in our schools. So the Government should increase the library facilities in each & every schools.

Conclusion:

Uniform education system may create an education revolution in Tamil Nadu and it will scatter over all the states. The Government also will make keen attention towards the education system in our country. We hope the uniform education syllabus will reduce the imbalance between the rural student’s knowledge and urban student’s knowledge. It is the time to create education revolution in our country. We believe our state forward its first foot step to wards education revolution. In uniform education, common syllabus is one of the foot step, still there are many foot steps are inform of us we have to cross them in order to get a quality education and also to provide quality education to our state students. Government may do and God will help them.

Education in Jamaica

Recently Education Minister Andrew Holness has made the news on many occasions whether it be grading primary school principals or expressing what he really thinks about the GSAT examination. Andrew Holness has not been forceful in his capacity and also has not led in the right areas as the Minister of Education.

When in opposition Holness served as Opposition Minister of Education which would have given him adequate knowledge of the inefficiencies within the ministry and would have provided him with a working framework to change policies. What have we seen of this Minister? Holness appears in the news blaming everyone else but himself for not leading to eradicating the inequity and changing policies at his ministry. We owe it to the younger generation to develop an education system that is fair and one that will provide them with the best education to make them productive for this rapidly changing world.

Clearly, there are problems with the curriculum of the GSAT examination which must be fixed. Annually, we complain of how stressful the curriculum is, and the many faults the exam has where students at grade six are judged on topics that will be covered at higher levels. Next year around this time we will still be discussing the faults within the examination. Are we seeing a cycle here?

Blaming teachers’ colleges for accepting teachers that are not up to par cannot be accepted. Holness has the power to influence teachers’ colleges to improve on their standards to benefit the education product. I am frustrated with Holness pushing the blame around highlighting the facts we already know. Holness should stand firm and effect the changes that ought to be made to make our education system improve giving our children the best opportunities.

Next year at this time we should be stating that requirements at the teachers’ colleges were improved upon; changes to the curriculum were implemented making the exam relevant for grade six students; the ratio between teacher and students were reduced among other things. When are we going to get serious and hold Andrew Holness accountable for the shortfalls in the education ministry? After all, he is responsible.