The most important task in present scenario is to impart better and quality education. Children are the nation builder of future and to carve them as good citizen we need to provide them with proper education so that they can become pillar of the nation's growth. In this aspect, we had wonderful discussion on the above topic. Here are some important points, which should be taken into consideration while framing the policy.
Privatization in education has increased the opportunities by increasing the scope of admissions in all levels of education. Due to ownership, level of quality increased in few set-ups to great extent however, this is not true with all private organizations. Most Private institutions are meant for financially strong strata of the society and the poor children are bound to go to government schools. This has widened the gap between the poor and the rich. Due to policies of various states such as, Shikshan Sewak, Shiksha Mitra, Samvida, Guruji, etc, young talent is not at all interested in government system except NVS/KVS and Excellence schools. Most of the parents of children enrolled in government schools are poor and illiterate. Therefore, there is no one to assist them at home. Government mechanism is utterly failing in this aspect. Lot of facilities have been provided nowadays to public system but no proper strategies to utilize and maintain it. Due to this, it is turning to be great failure. Privatization has no doubt increased the quantity of schools but quality is yet to be enhanced.
Though the job opportunities have increased but salary has decreased. Job security and satisfaction have lost. There seems no freedom for innovations in teaching as the private schools have their own set rules, methods, which teachers have to follow. Very less chances of upward mobility. Many times, one has to obey the management where most of the members who are not qualified to fit into that position. In this system, buttering has become important.
In recent 10 years, the quality of education in government schools has degraded drastically as a result people are opting for private schools. These schools are making education their business which people generally call Commercialization of Education. However, in field of higher education situation has not become so worse. Still various Government Colleges and institutions are first choice for students.
On the other hand, due to government's policy of preferring quantity over quality, private schools colleges are growing daily. Getting registration for school is too easy. Influential people own most of such institutions where goal is to extort money in the name of fees for various purposes. Even these institutions have become source of converting black money into white.
Status of Engineers in MP has gone down. There are about 200 Engineering colleges in MP providing about 90,000 seats out of which normally 40-45 thousand are filled. Students who are passing engineering are now appearing in exams, which require qualification as Higher Secondary School Certificate (10+2) or plain graduation. Many private institutions, which are working for many years and have performed well in providing quality education without any tantrums of other private schools, are very few. Government institutions, which are performing comparatively better are very few. Private schools at big cities are good but quality at small urban areas like tehsil places is not on par. In addition, in many instance government schools at higher level are performing better than private schools of same area.
Education is subject of both State and Central government but more population is covered by state government agencies where lies our main problem. State government has to improve education system in primary and middle school level. Elementary level of schooling is base, which is most important. It is where student develops interest in studies and any specific subject. However, government is ignorant on this part.
Another most crucial part is scarcity of trained teachers. (It is so because level of B.Ed. in M P is very poor due to numerous B. Ed colleges where degree is almost sold). As they do not attend regular classes and no training is given to them whereas Government teachers are employed in various non-educational works e.g. elections, census etc. Sometimes due to low remuneration (almost one fourth) of contract teachers, they are disinterested in teaching. Because though they are recruited through VYAPAM (Samvida Shikshak Pariksha) on temporary basis, they are given low salary and expected to work more than the permanent employee who get more than double of their salary.
Stress and expenditure of government is more on Public Alluring Schemes such as MDM, uniform/bicycle distribution, Scholarship, haath dhulaai, yoga etc and less on education. Passing students till class 8 with no detention policy results in poor performance, as a result private schools are more popular especially, lower and middle schools. At higher education level, “Mushroom Colleges”have grown rapidly. Such colleges are even running in a 2-3 story houses and have become center for selling degrees. After paying money, you are not required to attend classes. Such institutions are more in professional courses such as Engineering, MBA, Pharmacy and B. Ed. Due to this Graduates/Post Graduates are not employable and hence are working on low wages. Except very few private higher educational institutions, we cannot compare with government owned institutions like IITs/IIMs/IISERs/AIMS/NITs and so on.
At the school level, private schools have edge over government schools only in case of state owned schools but KVS/NVS/Excellence schools are on par with them. Children admitted in Private Schools are studying at three places. School, Home and in Coaching Classes. In private schools, children inducted are from good family background they get good support of parents and hence perform better.
However, the teachers and children both have much mental pressure to achieve high score in these schools. On the other hand, teachers are underpaid but are expected to give their best by hook or crook. Children do not have time for themselves to spend on outdoor games and hence confined to Gadgets.
There are fed concepts and much emphasis is not given on evolving the innovative ideas. Teachers have tremendous work pressure and job insecurity so they have to work hard.
So ultimately seems private schools are better than public schools and no doubt, some of them are. In state owned schools, it’s just reverse they do not have proper infrastructure and basic amenities to provide learning environment. Poor management, scarce resources, lack of will power of teachers deteriorating the quality.
So finally, we have to make our foundation very strong that is from elementary school system to higher learning institutions. For this, we can adopt certain measures like-
- To pay proper wages to the teachers.
- There should be no Guruji/Samvida/Shiksha mitra and many more such post, which are not permanent and low, paid.
- Proper monitoring over the teaching learning practices in the schools to ensure the quality of education.
- Teachers in government schools should really toil to bring the name up so that people will get encouraged to send their ward in government schools.
Finally very strong will power to bring change from the rudimentary level.
(The above topic was suggested by Mr Baliram Sahu, PGT (Economics), KV Amla, MP and compiled for wiki by Mr Raju Borkar, PRT, DMS, RIE Bhopal)
Privatization of Education: Solution to Resource Crunch
POINTS TO DEVELOP 1. Concept of privatization.
- State responsibility and failures.
- What privatization can do – benefits and dangers.
- Total privatization not feasible or desirable.
- State intervention should ensure proper working.
THE concept of privatization refers to private ownership in varying degrees – form total ownership to ownership in the form of joint ventures – and private management and control in public sector enterprises aimed at breaking state monopoly in various sectors. The effect of privatization is slowly being felt in all sectors of the economy. Inevitably , it is being recommended for the education sector as well.
Education is one of the fastest growing service sectors of the Indian economy. The medical and health care sector alone has developed faster than education sector. The government spending on education in India was 3.3 per cent in 1999-2000, 1.3 per cent more than China’s public spending on education, which was per cent in 1999-2000. But the average government spending on education of the top 100 countries in the world was 5.24 per cent, about 50 per cent more than India’s. incidentally, India was positioned 81. Privatization of education in India and /or more vigorous and active participation by private bodies in the education field, one feels, would significantly improve India’s rank bringing it at par with the top nations in this field.
Since independence, the responsibility for expansion and development of education has lain largely on the state. Education was recently given the status of fundamental right. With development of the society and an increase in its economic capacity, it becomes obligatory for the state to increase its allocation of resources to the education sector in order to provide free, compulsory education to all children under 14 years of age; higher education for its citizens so that they can lead dignified lives; and equal opportunities for education to individuals and groups who are socially and economically weaker.
The state education Commission (1964-66) set down a total public expenditure on education of 6 per cent per annum of GNP by 1986 if the national income increased at the rate of 6 per cent per annum and population growth, at 2.1 per cent annum during 1955-56 to 1985-86. But even with a high growth rate of income, with the various sectors still low on the priority list. The state can non longer cope with the situation. Thus more and more people are looking towards privatization of education as a panacea.
Knowledge is fast expanding and accumulation of it has become an important part of the development process. As a result , education itself has become an economic output necessary for human resource development. The private sector , benefiting much from the knowledge industry, can also take an active part in education. This is all the more needed with the outbreak of the technological revolution. Technological developments in the fields of communication, electronics, computers , etc,. require an educated and well trained manpower whose financial needs cannot be fulfilled by the public sector alone.
Need for privatization ahs also risen because all these years of state –funded education has made it an almost free service and it has lost its real value where its direct beneficiaries (students ) are concerned. Privatization , by getting back the whole cost of education, or a large percentage of it, by way of education fees, would instill would take greater interest in ensuring an improvement in the quality of education. Privatization would demand the full cost of education. This would facilitate withdrawal of state subsidies and lighten the burden on the state. Institutions would be favored with greater freedom; they would be able to hire talented staff, paying them better salaries. Privatization will also urge the beneficiaries of the output of educational establishments, mainly the corporate sector, to share the funding of these institutions.
In spite of the state’s large contribution in the establishment of schools and colleges, privatization of education has been taking place rapidly at the school level. Private schools , set up and run by private entrepreneurs on a commercial basis, and curiously enough, called public schools, impart education mostly through the English medium and charge the full education cost-much more, indeed, some would say. The private sector’s attempts have also included schools run by reputed religious or social organizations and charitable trusts, which do not receive any grants from the government. But at the higher level, by private agencies but funded by both government and non- governmental means.
The private sector cannot, however, totally cater to the country’s educational needs. For one, the heavy fees charged in the private institutions would deny poor sections opportunities for education. Witness the capitation fees charged in private professional colleges. This leads to identifications of privatization with commercial motives. Here it would be useful to note that India has a fairly large system of higher education in as much as we have today around 250 universities, over 10,500 colleges and nearly 55 lakh students being taught by 3 lakh –odd teachers. Despite this population in the relevant age group of 16-23 is a miserable 6 per cent. This is fairly low even when compared with developing nations, the figure being 20 per cent for both Thailand and Egypt, 11 per cent for Brazil, 16 per cent for the Mexico and 10 per cent for Turkey. On the other hand, in the developed countries, access to higher educations is over expanded generally courtesy heavy state support, inadequate access continues to cause worry. This when higher is highly subsidized by the Indian government. privatization of education, especially higher education, it is said, may further dampen prospective students and their guardians from seeking to study at higher levels. Hence, extreme caution is needed while speeding up the privatization process in education. Further, total privatization would give the institution the right to hire or fire staff according to their needs and to stop courses or open new courses as they see fit. This could have undesirable results, such as coin, security of teachers’ jobs has led to a fall in work specified number of years’ service. There are no incentives to encourage advanced reading and research. Some balance courses depending on their market value will open the education sector to commercialization. Social sciences., physical science and courses in ancient languages like Sanskrit may not have a profitability value but these must figure in the school and college curricula for the sake of preserving an interest in culture and liberal arts. Privatization with appropriate state intervention is what will suit Indian conditions.
The recovery cost of education must be slowly in – creased. It has been pointed out that in the next 10 years the contribution of fees by students must rise to 25 per cent of total expenditure. Evolving a strategy to accomplish this, the Ramamurti committee in 1990 suggested a fee hike at the higher education level with the richest recipients of education paying 75 percent of their educational cost, the next richest , 50 per cent of the cost, the next richest section, 25 per cent and the economically weak sections bearing Zero cost. This discriminatory fee structure is not quite partitions. What can take its place is a uniform fee structure, that nevertheless permits 25 per cent of the students from economically weaker sections full fee exemption. This would increase the recovery cost and bring about a reduction in state subsidy.
Graduate tax on users of the output of higher education institutions, i.e.. the corporate sector which is the biggest user of educated manpower, has been suggested by the world Bank. The Ramanmurti Committee was hesitant regarding any such measure, indicating that it would affect economic stability of the corporate sector by means of grants. Hence, the corporate sector needs to fund higher education’s on its own or else education cess can be imposed on it so that a share of its gross profits will be available for funding purposes.
Universities can also get involved in research projects for the corporate sector and use part of the project funds for education needs. More importantly, each university should identify avenues of resource generation, both internal and external, depending upon the nature of the programmers offered and the locale. The Punnayya committee set up by the UGC and the Swaminathan panel of the AICTE have made some broad recommendations in this include proper utilization of funds, general economy in expenditures, pooling and most importantly, rationalization of fee structure. In the United States of America, the concept of private universities is an integrated part of the political and economic philosophy of consumer sovereignty. State intervention in education is exerted indirectly by regulating consumer response. The higher education system in the UK shares some features with those in the USA. State intervention should ensure that the private sector institutions provide the poor sections of the masses access to education in theses institutions.
Education is admitted to be a necessity for development. The government is unable to find the funds required for it. In the circumstances, privatization is the only answer, provided certain guidelines ensure societal goods as well as the profit motive.