Weekly Update on Education

27 September 2011

Education minister says school closures may be necessary
BBC, 26 September 2011

John O’Dowd has ordered an immediate audit of every school, starting with post primaries. It will look at pupil numbers, finances and educational quality. That audit will report by the end of December and the minister said actions will follow to safeguard the education of pupils. The education minister was speaking in the assembly on Monday as he launched proposals for the future of education in Northern Ireland.

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Q&A: Fred Hilmer, President, University of New South Wales
Business Standard, 27 September 2011

University of New South Wales (UNSW), Australia, is exploring partnership opportunities with top Indian educational institutions and businesses. While it does not intend to open an India campus or offer tailored corporate degrees, it is looking at research avenues in collaboration with centres of academic excellence in the country. On his recent visit to India to meet leading institutions and government representatives, UNSW President and Vice-Chancellor, Fred Hilmer, spoke to Piyali Mandal & Nivedita Mookerji about student safety on Australian campuses, competition from other countries in the race for being a popular overseas education destination and visa reforms, among other things.

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Obama Unveils Education Plan
Wall Street Journal, 23 September 2011

President Barack Obama is replacing key planks of former President George W. Bush’s signature No Child Left Behind education law, allowing many schools to escape looming punishment if their states adopt a new set of standards. Under the new system, which Mr. Obama announced Friday, states would qualify for a waiver from existing rules by requiring, among other things, that evaluations of teachers and principals be linked to the results of student tests and other measures of performance.

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Edu min’s PA, aides caught taking bribe
Times of India, 23 September 2011

MUMBAI: The personal assistant (PA) of state education minister Rajendra Darda and two junior officers of the education department were caught red-handed by the anti-corruption bureau (ACB) while taking a bribe from officials of a Nashik-based school on Thursday afternoon. Darda’s PA has been identified as Deepak Karande and his assistants as Praveen Bodke and Prashant Andhare, both of whom are with the school education department.

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Next Education bags Best Digital Multimedia Content award
IndiaInfoLine, 20 September 2011

Next Education India Pvt. Ltd., India’s fastest growing e-learning enterprise offering creative ICT solutions, bagged the Wisitex Shiksha Ratna Award for “Best Digital Multimedia Content – K-12 Segment” at the India eLearning Summit 2011 held in Mumbai recently. The award was presented by Maharashtra Minister for Higher and Technical Education, Rajesh Tope at the inaugural ceremony of the summit at Y. B. Chavan Auditorium at Nariman Point in Mumbai.

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SSA to have database on all schools in state
IBNLive, 26 September 2011

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A few months from now, the Education Department will have a solid database on the requirements of all schools in the state, be it additional buildings, toilets or playgrounds, thanks to the wholesome school development plan to be drawn up by the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), ahead of the implementation of the Right to Education (RTE) Act in the state. The plan is part of the vision document to be prepared by SSA, the implementing agency of RTE Act in the state. The preparation of a vision document has been laid out in the Central norms for RTE Act implementation.

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Indian pre-school education market likely to reach $1 billion
The Economic Times, 25 September 2011

MUMBAI: Pre-school education market is set to reach USD 1 billion mark by 2012 against USD 750 million at present. “The Indian pre-school market is set to become the largest in the world. In India, the pre-school segment is currently worth USD 750 million and is expected to reach USD 1 billion by 2012,” Serra International Pre-Schools Chairman, Arun Arora told PTI here. Currently, the industry in India divided between the organised and unorganised sector.

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Improving Educational Quality through Enhancing Community Participation
Research: Policy Working Paper
Pradhan, Suryadarma, Beatty, Wong, Alishjabana, Gaduh and Artha

Abstract:This study evaluates the effect of four randomized interventions aimed at strengthening school committees, and subsequently improving learning outcomes, in public primary schools in Indonesia. All study schools were randomly allocated to either a control group receiving no intervention, or to treatment groups receiving a grant plus one or a combination of three interventions: training for school committee members, a democratic election of school committee members, or facilitated collaboration between the school committee and the village council, also called linkage. Nearly two years after implementation, the study finds that measures to reinforce existing school committee structures, the grant and training interventions, demonstrate limited or no effects; while measures that foster outside ties between the school committee and other parties, linkage and election, lead to greater engagement by education stakeholders and in turn to learning.

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Measuring the economic gain of investing in girls: the girl effect dividend
Research: Policy Working Paper
Chaaban and Cunningham

Abstract: Although girls are approximately half the youth population in developing countries, they contribute less than their potential to the economy. The objective of this paper is to quantify the opportunity cost of girls’ exclusion from productive employment with the hope that stark figures will lead policymakers to reconsider the current underinvestment in girls. The paper explores the linkages between investing in girls and potential increases in national income by examining three widely prevalent aspects of adolescent girls’ lives: early school dropout, teenage pregnancy and joblessness.

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Philippines Yahoo
Hundreds of students execute "planking" by lying prone on the pavement during a rally near the Presidential Palace in Manila, Philippines to protest budget cuts in education for state universities and colleges in the country. Source: Yahoo! News Phillipines


Read Joseph P Overton Fellow Bharat Rout's blog 'Can the RTE Act foster inclusion in Indian schools?' on our portal


RTE Coalition

To initiate and continue the discussion amongst concerned groups and individuals on the issue of right of education and monitor the implementation
of the RTE Act, an RTE Coalition has been formed. Join the coalition to make universal elementary education a reality in India.

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Are lotteries a credible way of selecting students under the 25% reservation system mandated by the RTE?

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Skill Vouchers - Global Experiences and Lessons for India

Leah Verghese and Parth J Shah

A study of the role that skill vouchers can play in catalysing demand for quality skill development services. This study examines global experiences with skill vouchers and draws lessons for India from these experiences.

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Reservation in Private Schools under the Right to Education Act: Model for Implementation

Shekhar Mittal and Parth J Shah

Through this document the Centre for Civil Society seeks to highlight the lacunae in the current framework for 25% reservation for weaker and disadvantaged groups in unaided private schools and seeks to provide inputs on effective implementation of the same.

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School Vouchers for Girls

400 girl children from poor families of North East Delhi receive school vouchers for a period of 4 years.
For details visit our website


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