Thoughts On The Non State Sector in Education

Thoughts On The Non State Sector in Education (Tuesday Session 1)

Is another question that needs to be asked, not just what works in non-state education and what are the lessons we can learn from experiments with PPP's and innovations in different places, but also what conditions will make non-state education work in different places, is it being be supported by the government, elites, businesses, or the poor or different cross class combinations of these groups, so in short what a political economy analysis of an particular education system says about the role of non-state education as well - so do we need to consider a political if maybe not entirely ideological lens?

So we still need to confront the ethical questions and also the transparency questions around the data from private schools. We actually need effective data from parents and local bodies. BRAC's example shows that you cannot have a short-term solution and then just market that. There are always choices about how you go forward with systems. There are many opportunities offered by the private system, such as giving different people the opportunity to deliver and to involve everyone in the training, getting a wider range of bodies on board to a higher level, and finding new and innovative ways to work effectively alongside the government.

Another question is what do you do when the government no longer can be relied on to deliver quality assurance, proper support and effective governance. For example in the case of Pakistan. Also we need to ask what can you do when a voucher program expires, who will make it sustainable? So what are the best pathways between the state and non-state actors. In Pakistan and Bangladesh the governance issue is a critical one in dealing with non-state education.

On this point DFID will be releasing a research paper that systematically looks at the evidence on non-state schools.

A further question also is that non-state schools rely on partnerships and to a degree it depends on how much the government will help to facilitate the right kinds of partnerships.

Non-state education has a role to play in innovation, but what responsability towards equity do NGO's and international organisations have exactly ?

The macro-economic questions are also important, states can't deal with the explosion of youth and the increasing demand for education, these are partly also driving the need for non-state actors to take up different positions.

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