Weekly Update on Education (Issue No 217)

11 Dec 2012

Can private schools teach the world?
BBC News Business, December 10th, 2012

Despite international pledges, there are still millions of pupils around the world without a basic education.Could the private sector be a more effective way of reaching these millions of pupils who are missing out?Should donors be supporting low-cost, low-fee private schools, rather than trying to build state education systems?

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Private school owners protest against strict affiliation norms
Times of India, December 6th, 2012

The school owners demanded the Board to withdraw the strict rules for granting affiliation. As the gathering grew in size, the Board finally decided to call a meeting with the representatives and by evening formed a committee to decide on the amount of penalty to be paid by schools and relaxing the norms for affiliation. Under the Right to Education Act, schools need to provide adequate facilities to students including a playground, toilets and common room for girls. Earlier, schools till primary level did not need to apply for recognition.

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Rote learning is an evil in education system, national survey reveals
The Times of India, December 11th, 2012

Over the last couple of years, studies reviewing the performance of students in professional courses show that they don’t meet the benchmark. Nearly 75% of second year engineering students in colleges in and around Chennai failed in at least one subject in the third semester. Months after acing their Class 12 exams, nearly 40% of first year medical students in 27 colleges across the state failed, a review in 2011 revealed. Among dental students too the pass rate of final year students in the state was around 40%.

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Recognition for schools
The Statesman, December 6th, 2012

Bharti Foundation’s flagship initiative, the Satya Bharti School Program, has won the Qatar Foundation’s 2012 “World Innovation Summit for Education” (WISE) Award for its transformative impact and innovative approach to improve the quality and delivery of education to underprivileged children in rural India. The Satya Bharti School Program provides free quality education to over 38,000 children across rural India through its network of 254 primary and secondary schools. The 2012 WISE Awards Finalists have been selected under the theme ‘Transforming Education’.

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Survey on out of school youths to be concluded till 22nd December: Maluka
Hindustan Times, December 6th, 2012

The Punjab government has issued instructions to complete the survey on out-of-school-youth between 6 and 14 years of age till December 22. Stating this here on Thursday, education minister Sikander Singh Maluka said that the objective behind the survey,which would commence on December 12, was to provide basic education to all the out-of-school-youth in the state.He said that it was the mandate of the Punjab Government to provide free and compulsory education to all the children up to class-VIII.

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No stay order on school admissions, says State
Hindustan Times, December 6th, 2012

The state government has not put any stay on school admissions at the entry level classes and schools will have to proceed as they did last year in following the Right To Education Act, state government officials have said. Schools claimed there was confusion and lack of clarity on how to proceed with admissions this year.

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Poor schools struggling to meet state standards, years after critical ruling
New York Times, December 10th, 2012

Six years after a landmark court ruling required New York State to increase spending on public education, many schools in poor districts lack basic resources, and some do not even meet minimum state standards in certain areas, according to a report to be released on Monday by researchers affiliated with Teachers College at Columbia University.The researchers interviewed teachers, administrators and support staff members at 33 schools with high proportions of low-income, struggling or disabled students, including 12 in New York City.In many cases, schools could not afford enough staff members to meet standards in core subjects or in services like extra help for struggling students.

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Govt. Schools ‘dumped’ by authorities
Hindustan Times, December 5th, 2012

Poor sanitary conditions in and around the government elementary school in New Power House Colony in the city have put the health of both minor boys and girls in danger, to which government authorities are oblivious. A visit to the locality revealed that heaps of garbage littered places around the school premises, located in the government residential colony near the main bus sand. It is a co-educational school and has students up to Class 5 on its rolls. Puddles of water around the school due to leaking overhead water tanks have only added to the discomfit of the school students and teaching and non-teaching staff alike. School also has insufficient furniture, due to which most students are forced to sit on floors in their classrooms.

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Forces won’t occupy school buildings: GoI
Kashmir Reader, December 11th, 2012

The Indian government has given clear-cut instructions to the states that security forces engaged in the counterinsurgency operations should not be allowed to occupy school buildings, the government said Monday. Addressing the National Consultation on Education in Areas Affected by Civil Strife, organised by UNICEF here, HRD Minister M M Pallam Raju said occupation of schools by security forces engaged in operations in conflict-hit areas, particularly Naxal-dominated districts, has been “one of the reasons for the extremists targeting educational institutions”.

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Pedagogy Market: The CBSE-Pearson Tie-up
Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. XLVII No. 47-48 December 1st, 2012

Of late, public-private partnership is meant to encourage private capital to take responsibility for matters that were earlier regarded as primary duties of the State. The centre set up by the Pearson Company in partnership with the Central Board of Secondary Education is meant to enable the latter to progress towards the fulfi lment of longterm policy measures like developing a school-based evaluation system. In choosing Pearson as a partner, the Board has conveyed that its goals are not incompatible with the direction in which the market of educational services and commodities is pushing educational policies in several parts of the world.

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Learning from Innovative Primary school teachers
The field of primary education is an innovator’s delight. It is one area where innovations can deliver extremely satisfying results. Unfortunately, our performance in this field since independence has not been up to the mark. The main issues are: access to quality primary education and the retention of students in schools. Perhaps, in a polity where winning the maximum votes drives any action, the fact that school children have no voting right has put primary education at a great disadvantage. Click here to read more

Education poll Exposes Moochin’ Americans
As we slide towards the “fiscal cliff,” President Obama’s stance seems pretty clear: Americans want lots of stuff but shouldn’t have to pay for it. (It’s a position the GOP has also often taken.) A new education survey suggests the President’s position is politically smart. Click here to read more


Should school premises be occupied for non-educational activities during non-working hours?

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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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for more information

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.

For more click here

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.

For more click here

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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