Making rights realities: Does privatising educational services for the poor make sense?
Professor Keith Lewin, of International Education and Development at the University of Sussex, and the Director of the Consortium for Research on Educational Access, Transitions and Equity, answers questions about the role that for-profit private providers of educational services can play in universalising access to basic education, where he argues the case for continued emphasis on public provision and financing of basic education to promote equitable development remains compelling.
10 Principles for a global education and development agenda beyond 2015
EI has developed a flexible framework for the question concerning the global development of education and the MDG agenda after the 2015 deadline; EI took part in the online consultations for the “World We Want” Initiative, and EI will be attending the high level global thematic panel meetings in Dakar and Bali later this year. Currently, EI is advocating for: human rights—especially the right to an education to be at the core of a credible development and education framework; an education wherein the impacts of inequalities will not undermine or inhibit the full access to this right; particular attention to be paid to gender parity, special needs and disability students across all priorities within the global development framework; the level of quality of teachers as a key determiner for the level of quality of education that those teachers distribute; broader standards of evaluation in determining rates or levels of learning; the continued expansion of an equal access to quality education for all people, especially at the primary and secondary levels; sufficient, progressive public financing to ensure implementation and achievement of education for all people regardless of socio-economic status; and the utilization and influence of the past successes and failures of different education frameworks on the post-2015 framework.
Impacts of IMF Policies on National Education Budgets and Education
This Education International Research Institute report provides a critical review of how current IMF macroeconomic policy conditions and advice impact on the ability of borrowing countries to finance national education budgets, wages for public sector teachers, and how such policies affect the ability of governments to achieve the progressive realization of the Right to Education for their citizens. It then offers a review of other alternative more expansionary fiscal, monetary and financial policy options which could allow for greater mobilization of financial resources available for future education budgets. It examines three in‐depth country case studies of current IMF loan programs in Jamaica, Uganda and Latvia. Finally, it offers a proposed advocacy strategy and framework for increasing public scrutiny of current IMF loan program conditions, widening the domestic national public debates about such policies, and enhancing public participation in discussions of possible alternative macroeconomic policy options for increasing financing for education.
The Future of the Teaching Profession
Drawing on the evidence on what it means to be a teacher in the 21st century this Education International Research Institute study begins with an analysis of the current situation in differing countries of the world. It examines the policies which frame teachers’ work and the underpinning assumptions on which those policies rest. It illustrates how policy has been shaping the nature of practice, often with effects that limit teachers’ professional judgment and which may, in the process, constrain student achievement.
The world very diverse also in terms of education systems and teachers, their issues and priorities. Given the enormous body of practice and knowledge available, a body which is constantly changing and evolving, like EI’s Education Policy, this study can only be a work in progress; a work which reflects the impact on school communities of education policies and systems.
Primarily, this is a profoundly practical study, there to support teachers and their organisations in their arguments to place the voice of teachers centre stage in the arguments around shaping the teaching profession in the 21 century. For EI the study will be profoundly important in carrying forward its dialogue with global partners such as OECD.
Hidden Privatisation in Public Education
"...The trend towards privatization of public education is hidden. It is camouflaged by the language of “educational reform,” or introduced stealthily as “modernization”. In the education sector, governments have historically made considerable use of contracting for non-core educational services, such as school transport, food services and cleaning. However, in recent years there has been a broadening in the scope of contracting undertaken in the education sector. In many countries this practice is now so normalized that it provokes little or no public comment. Trade unions have a major role to play in the monitoring and analysis of privatization moves and tendencies. the collection of information, construction of databases, and dissemination of information related to these tendencies is a key service and resource both for members and the public at large.”
Global Managerial Education Reforms and Teachers
The EI Research Institute and the University of Amsterdam IS Academie "Education and Development" have co-published a volume exploring the role that teachers play in global policy processes and the effects of education reforms on teachers' labour and professionalism in seven case study countries, including India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Namibia, Peru, Turkey and Uganda.
The chapters are based on empirical research and analyse how different global education policies, including PPPs, competency-based curriculum, school clusters, teachers' evaluation and accountability have been adopted and implemented in varying contexts and how they transform teachers' work. The various case studies show that teachers responses to global managerial education reforms are diverse and contradictory, yet all underline the crucial importance of teachers' agency for educational development.
Worlds of Education: Challenging hostile ideologies in the crisis
The economic crisis cannot used to justify the complete deregulation and privatisation of public services in order to ‘reduce costs’! At the international level, EI has been promoting alternative and more humane strategies for achieving economic recovery, especially through research and advocacy to counter damaging economic policies adopted by governments, often at the behest of the international financial institutions. EI has also joined forces with the other labour sectors through the Council of Global Unions. This collaboration provides a common front to lobby G8 and G20 governments to initiate a major recovery plan investing in skills, infrastructure and green jobs, with education at its core. The Global Unions’ alternative plan for jobs and recovery would not only stem the crisis, but shape a post-crisis world that is economically, socially and environmentally fair and sustainable.
EIRI/Council of Global Unions study: Global Corporate Taxation and Resources for Quality Public Services
This report explains how the resources for investment in people can be found. Billions of dollars and Euros are lost to communities because tax laws are national while the economy is global, and that simple fact has created unprecedented opportunities for tax minimization and avoidance. Global corporations have opportunities for tax avoidance that national enterprises do not have, let alone small business owners and wage and salary earners. Even without changing the tax laws, closing just some of these loopholes would make a huge difference in public resources. Closing loopholes will require changing mentalities – and political will. It means changing the widespread acceptance of tax avoidance as a legitimate goal of large corporations.
Public Private Partnerships in Education
"In an era of stretched public budgets and reduced taxation revenues, the involvement of private resources is increasingly seen as a strategy to sustain expansion of education opportunities both in quantity and quality. This view is shared not only by governments and industry, but also by many unions. This report maps and analyzes various reactions to PPPs in different contexts, seeking explanations, common trends and conditions under which some types of PPPs may be acceptable to unions...The only way unions can influence them in order to avoid their negative and dangerous impact and to foster any positive aspects, is to enhance their involvement in the PPP debate. Such engagement requires strategic thinking and an international perspective on the issue."
Closing the Trained Teacher Gap
Every Child Needs a Teacher: Closing the Trained Teacher Gap is a report jointly produced by the Global Campaign for Education and Education International identifying severe primary teacher gaps, its impact on education systems and to make recommendations for closing this gap.
This report was launched during an event at the United Nations General Assembly in New York on September 25, 2012. EI President Susan Hopgood argued why we need adequately trained and remunerated teachers for quality publicly provided education for all. Read the full speech.
EI Education Policy Paper
This policy statement is underpinned by concepts which are central to EI’s philosophy and which represent the core values and demands of the education union movement. These include quality education as a human right, education provided by public authorities and available freely to all, inclusive education and equality in education and society, and high professional status for teachers. The policy also refers to challenges that serve as a call to action to be addressed by concrete initiatives and strategies.