This comparative report reviews and analyses a range of selected educational issues in Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)+6 countries, which include 10 ASEAN member countries plus Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, and the Republic of Korea. In particular, it highlights the key issues, challenges and opportunities for improving system performance and reducing educational disparities across ASEAN+6 countries. It thus provides useful inputs for informing policy options for education development in these and other countries. The issues reviewed are grouped into three policy areas: 1) sector policy and management frameworks, 2) secondary education, and 3) technical and vocational education and training (TVET), all of which are of critical importance in the context of formulating and operationalizing education reform agendas in these countries. The reports informs about legislative and policy frameworks. The report focuses on quality, teachers and financing.

Commercialisation is creeping into our public school system. A new report, Commercialisation in Public Schooling, reveals teachers are concerned about the influence commercialisation is having in schools; on everything from the provision of tests like NAPLAN, through to private providers offering classes in PE, Music, Drama and even professional development courses for teachers.

The report reveals schools are now forced to buy-in a substantial volume of educational products and services that were once provided by education departments.

These include:

  • Lesson plans
  • Reading programmes
  • Curriculum content
  • Assessment services
  • Remedial instruction
  • Online learning programmes
  • Student data packages
  • NAPLAN and exam preparation materials
  • Professional development for staff
  • School administration support

And, with public education and school budgets constantly under pressure, some schools are looking to pass on the costs for these commercial services to parents wherever they can.

Globally, the provision of education services is a massive business; worth an estimated $4.3 trillion annually.

The Commercialisation in Public Schooling report was commissioned by the NSW Teachers Federation and conducted by Professor Bob Lingard of the University of Queensland’s School of Education and a team which included Dr Sam Sellar (Manchester Metropolitan University), Dr Anna Hogan (University of Queensland) and Associate Professor Greg Thompson (Queensland University of Technology).

NSW Teachers Federation President Maurie Mulheron said the report sounded a warning for parents, teachers, governments and education administrators.

 

The UNESCO Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP-UNESCO) has just published six case studies from Asia and the Pacific to inspire and inform open school data policies in and beyond the region, and to empower citizens to fight corruption in education.

The case studies look at a range of school report card initiatives (both government-led and citizen-led) to create a new evidence base for more informed policy-making on how to use school-related data to create a more transparent and accountable education system.

They look at who publishes school data, what type of data is published, and the level of accessibility and use by various stakeholders. Each case study also draws from a survey of some 250 school-level actors to understand how users of school data currently interact with various school report card initiatives. The case studies conclude with a number of recommendations for more effective school report card design and implementation.