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IssueBriefs

UNICEF INDONESIA

OCTOBER 2012

Education & Early Childhood


Development (ECD)
Critical Links

ducation is fundamental to child well-being and


contributes to reducing poverty and inequalities.
Higher levels of education among mothers promote
healthy and health-seeking behaviour and are therefore
associated with a reduced probability of children dying
before their fifth birthday, and with a reduced risk
of maternal death. Young children who are prepared
for school are better equipped to learn, more likely to
stay in school and more likely to succeed, with higher
future earning capability. Young peoples knowledge
of reproductive health can help reduce the risk of HIV
and sexually transmitted infections.
School readiness is a proven strategy to improve the
economic and social development of a society.
Various studies show its benefits and return on
investment, in terms of reduced education costs,
increased human productivity and income, and
benefits to society. Effective early childhood
development (ECD) programmes reduce education
costs by improving the internal efficiency of primary
education: fewer children repeat grades. Every added
grade achieved in school leads to higher eventual
earnings. A citizenry that can earn more can better
contribute to the economic growth of a country.
Overall, the benefits to society of sound ECD
programmes outweigh the costs by five to seven
times.
School readiness should be embedded within holistic
child development, which encompasses verbal and
intellectual skills and knowledge, social abilities, and
health and nutritional status. Studies show that poor
educational performance, reduced years of schooling
and lower incomes as adults can all be associated
with stunting in young children. Children therefore
derive the greatest benefits when ECD programmes

unite for children

are holistic, integrating psychosocial and school


readiness interventions with health and nutrition
interventions. Holistic development is essential for
childrens preparedness for school and their ability to
participate in different learning environments. The
strong link between holistic child development and
school readiness underscores the importance of
integrated, multi-sectoral ECD programmes that
unite health, nutrition, education and protection,
guaranteeing all children a strong start to life.

Interventions that start from prenatal care and


nutrition of mothers up to the age of two years
have the greatest impact on stunting. Children who
are stunted are more likely to grow into adults who
are less educated, poorer, and less healthy. Interventions
to support psychological development after this critical
period are also effective.

Education: progress and disparities

ndonesia has made remarkable progress towards


the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on
universal primary education and gender equality.
Indonesias primary school net enrolment ratio (NER),
primary survival rate, and literacy rate amongst
young people 15-24 years of age are well over 90
per cent. The country has achieved gender equality
in womens literacy, primary and junior secondary
education, and has nearly achieved the gender equality
target in senior secondary education. In tertiary
education, the ratio of girls attendance to that of
boys was 96 per cent in 2010.
Geographic disparities in NERs are still marked,
more so at secondary level. The following analysis of
enrolment uses data from Susenas 2010, which show
some differences with administrative data (Box 1).

within
mpasses
edge,
al status.
mance,
mes as
n young
atest
ic,
ness
ventions.
ens
o participate
ong link
hool
ntegrated,
health,
teeing all

are and
o years
Children
o adults
ealthy.
elopment

NER at 46 per cent for children aged 16-18 years


enrolled, whilst the Ministry data show this to be 56
per cent. The worst performing provinces are mostly
in the eastern part of the country.
Rural and urban disparities increase as children
move up the system, in favour of urban children
OCTOBER 2012
(Figure 3).

Papua
North Sulawesi

West Papua

West Papua

East Nusa Tenggara

South Sulawesi
Bangka Belitung

Bangka Belitung

East Nusa Tenggara

Gorontalo

Central Sulawesi

Source: Susenas 2010.

The qual
needs at
Out of 65
for Interna
Indonesia
quintile fo
mathema
100%
90%
80%

West Sulawesi

West Sulawesi

70%

West Kalimantan

North Maluku
East Kalimantan

Banten

South Sumatra

60%

Central Sulawesi

Riau Islands
DKI Jakarta

South Kalimantan

Banten

94.8

INDONESIA
West Kalimantan
DI Yogyakarta

50%

Central Kalimantan
South Sulawesi

40%

North Maluku

Maluku
South Kalimantan

Figure 1. Primary
net enrolment
ratios, by
province. Age 7-12
years. Source:

West Java
Southeast Sulawesi
West Nusa Tenggara
Lampung

Susenas 2010.

North Sumatra

South Sumatra

North Sulawesi

20%

Southeast Sulawesi

67.7

INDONESIA

Bali

Bali

Bengkulu

West Sumatra

Jambi

30%

Jambi

West Sumatra

10%
0%

West Java

East Java

Lampung

Central Java
Riau

Central Java

Central Kalimantan

East Java

Aceh

60%

Figure 2. Junior secondary


net enrolment ratios, by
province. Age 13-15 years.

Papua

Gorontalo

80%

Bengkulu

100%

Riau
West Nusa Tenggara

Gender differentials
areenrolment
generallyratios
lower than the
Box 1. Net
Geographic
disparities (Figure
in NERs3).
areThere
still marked,
urban/rural
differential
is littleasor

At province level, Papua needs special attention,


it
more
so
at
secondary
level.
The
following
analysis
has
the
lowest
primary
NER
(Figure
1).
noofdifference
in
primary
NER.
At
junior
secondary
uses data
from
Susenas
which
enrolment
Junior
secondary
NER
is 68
cent2010,
nationally
level,
the
gender
differential
is per
slightly
in favour
show
some
differences
with administrative
(Boxof
according
to survey data,
but 75 per cent data
according
girls
2
per
cent),
whilst
at
senior
secondary
1). (by
to data from the Ministry of Education and Culture.level,
it is slightly
in favour
of boys
per cent).
Some eastern
provinces
are(by
well6below
the national

Gender
differentials
average
(Figure 2).are generally lower than the
urban/rural
(Figure
3). There
littleshow
or

At seniordifferential
secondary school
level,
surveyis
data
Overall, the enrolment
patterns
confirm
the
need
to
NER at 46inper
cent for
children
aged secondary
16-18 years
no difference
primary
NER.
At junior
accelerate
action
in
the
rural
and
eastern
parts
of
whilstdifferential
the Ministry
show
this to be
level,enrolled,
the gender
is data
slightly
in favour
of 56
thegirls
country
atThe
all worst
levels.
per
performing
provinces
are level,
mostly
(bycent.
2 per
cent),
whilst
at senior
secondary
in the eastern
partofofboys
the country.
it is slightly
in favour
(by 6 per cent).

Rural and urban disparities increase as children

up enrolment
the system,
in favour ofconfirm
urban children
Box
1.move
Netthe
enrolment
ratiospatterns
Overall,
the need
(Figure level,
3). action
to
Ataccelerate
province
Papuain
needs
special
attention,
as it parts
has the
the rural and eastern
lowest
NERat(Figure
1).
of theprimary
country
all levels.
Junior secondary NER is 68 per cent nationally according to1
survey data, but 75 per cent according to data from the Ministry
of Education and Culture. Some eastern provinces
are well
Figure 2. Junior secondary
Papua
net enrolment ratios, by
below
the
national
average
(Figure
2).
West Papua
province. Age 13-15 years.
At senior secondary school level, survey data
NER at
Source: show
Susenas 2010.
East Nusa Tenggara
46Bangka
per Belitung
cent for children aged 16-18 years enrolled, whilst the
Ministry
data show this to be 56 per cent. The worst performing
Gorontalo
West Sulawesi
provinces
are mostly in the eastern part of the country.
Kalimantan
West
Rural
and urban disparities increase as children move up the
system, Banten
in favour of urban children (Figure 3).

Maluku

Dropout
rates in primary education are highest in
DKI Jakarta
the
grade (3.7 per cent). The rates are lower
Eastfirst
Kalimantan
thereafter,
Riau Islands but rise again in grade 6 (Figure 6). In the
Northschool
Sumatra
same
year, the dropout rate for junior
DI Yogyakarta
secondary
education is relatively low (1.8 per cent
Aceh
across Indonesia). However, this goes up in some
0%
20%
40%
60%
eastern provinces
(e.g.
around
6 per
cent in80%
East 100%
Nusa Tenggara).

Dropout
ratesofinprimary
primaryand
education
are education
highest in the
The quality
secondary
first
grade
(3.
7
per
cent).
The
rates
are
lower
thereafter,
needs attention across all levels and provinces.
The
2010
census
results
show
higher
numbers
of
Out
of
65
countries
assessed
by
OECDs
Programme
but rise again in grade 6 (Figure 6). In the same school
out-of-school
children
than
previously
estimated,
for International
Assessment
in 2009,
year,
the dropout Student
rateand
for urban-rural
junior
secondary
education is
with geographic
disparities
Indonesia
ranked
among
the
13
countries
in the
last
relatively
low
(1.8
per
cent
across
Indonesia).
However,
greater
gender
disparities
(Box 2).(reading,
quintile
forthan
the three
categories
assessed
this goes up in some eastern provinces (e.g. around 6
mathematics and science).
of children
who are out of school left
per The
cent majority
in East Nusa
Tenggara).
school during the transition from primary to
junior secondary school. Around 20 per cent of
Female
Figure 3.
Net enrolment
ratios, by
enrol in junior secondary
school.
In contrast,
85
per
sex & residence
90%
Source:
Susenas
2010.
cent of junior secondary graduates continue toMale
upper
secondary schools.
80%

100%

Rural

70%

Urban

60%

Central Sulawesi
South Kalimantan
Central Kalimantan
The
2010 census results show higher numbers of
South Sulawesi
out-of-school
children than previously estimated,
North Maluku
withSouth
geographic
and urban-rural disparities greater
Sumatra
Jambi
than gender
disparities (Box 2).
North Sulawesi

50%
40%
30%
20%

Southeast Sulawesi

The majority
of children who are out 67.7
of school left
INDONESIA
B
a
l
i
school during the transition from primary to junior
West Sumatra
secondary
school. Around 20 per cent of enrol in
West Java
junior secondary
school. In contrast, 85 per cent of
Lampung
Java
juniorCentral
secondary
graduates continue to upper
East Java
secondary schools.
Bengkulu

10%
0%

Primary

Junior Secondary

Senior Secondary

The quality of primary and secondary education


needs attention across all levels and provinces. Out

Riau
2West Nusa Tenggara
Maluku
DKI Jakarta
East Kalimantan
Riau Islands

100%
90%

Out of school

.1 m

o improve
of a
and return
ion costs,
and
od
education
f primary
very added
ventual
an better
untry.
CD
seven

literacy rate amongst young people 15-24 years of


age are well over 90 per cent. The country has
achieved gender equality in womens literacy, primary
and junior secondary education, and has nearly
achieved the gender equality target in senior
secondary
education. In tertiary education, the ratio
ISSUE
BRIEFS
of girls attendance to that of boys was 96 per cent in
2010.

1.4 m

d to learn,
y to
lity. Young
can help
itted

100%
90%
80%
70%
60%
50%
40%
30%
20%

3.

10%
0%

Age 5

30%

ECD: diversity & disparities

20%

Indonesia has
diverse ECD services. These range
OCTOBER
2012

from formal preschool and kindergartens serving


children aged 4-6 years to non-formal playgroups and
0%
childcare
centres, serving
children aged
to 6 years
Primary
Junior Secondary
Senior 2
Secondary
not served by formal programmes. Community-based
of 65 countries assessed by OECDs Programme for
services such as Posyandu (village integrated
International
Student
Assessment
in 2009,
Indonesia
services post)
focus
largely on health
and nutrition,
ranked
among
the
13
countries
in
the
last
quintile
for
and Bina Keluarga Balita (BKB), another communitythe three
assessed
(reading,
mathematics
basedcategories
programme,
focuses on
parenting
education
for mothers of young children, which centres on Pos
and science).
PAUD. 1 Programme outcomes appear to be
100%
of school
generally positive. A study on schoolOutreadiness
in six
90%
districts in Indonesia showed that ECD programmes
had helped to develop psychosocialInand
cognitive
80%
school
competencies to make children ready for school,
70%
providing participation in those programmes was at
60%
least one and a half years.
Attended when younger

100%

mbers of
stimated,
es

chool left
y to
ent of
, 85 per
to upper

5.8 m

2.1 m

1.4 m

10%

5.6 m

40%

Now out of school

Box 2. Out-of-school children

50%

26.3 m

m
D years were out of
Over 3.5 million11.2
children
aged 7-15
school
in
Indonesia
in
2010.
Of
this
number,
Figure
4.
Children in1.4
30%
school
and out
of school
6.5 m
million children were of primary
school
age
and 2.1
in million and in
20%
million
of junior secondary school
age, with
percentage,
by ageabout
group.
3.5
m
Source: Census 2010. Note: Of
equal numbers of girls and boys.
If children
of senior
the
3.47
million
"in
school"
in
10%
5-6 years age group, 2.48
secondary school age are alsothe
counted,
9.3 million
million or 71% are in various
pre-school programmes
0%
children were out of school. A significant
proportion
Age 5-6 years Age 7-12
Age 13-15
Age 16-18 according to Susenas 2010. The
rest
appear
to be inexperience
primary
of theseyears
out-of-school
children
had
some
years
years
school.
of attending school (Figure 4).

Central, East and West Java account for 42 per cent


of Indonesias out-of-school children in the age group
ECD: diversity
disparities
7 to 15 years.&
West
Java alone accounts for 21 per
centhas
of the
countrys
out-of-school
this age
ndonesia
diverse
ECD
services. children
These in
range
group. In terms of percentages, some eastern
from formal
preschool and kindergartens serving
provinces are higher.
children
aged differentials
4-6 years amongst
to non-formal
playgroups

Gender
out-of-school
children
2
vary by
level and
provincechildren
(Figure 5).
At ages
and childcare
centres,
serving
aged
2 to7-12
6
years, a by
greater
proportion
of girls are Communityout of school
years not served
formal
programmes.
compared to boys. In the 13-15 years age group, the
based services
suchof as
Posyandu
(village
integrated
proportion
boys
who are out
of school
is 10 per
cent more
that ofon
girls.
services post)
focusthan
largely
health and nutrition,
Keluarga
The proportion
of children
are outcommunityof school is
and Bina
Balita
(BKB),who
another
greater in urban areas than in rural areas: 6 and 4
based programme,
focuses amongst
on parenting
education
per cent respectively
urban and
rural
for mothers
of young
children,
centres
on Pos
children
aged 7-12
years; which
18 and 14
per cent
respectively amongst
urban
and rural
aged
PAUD.1 Programme
outcomes
appear
to children
be generally
13-15 years old.
40%

positive. A study on school readiness in six districts


in Indonesia
showed
thatold,
ECD
programmes
had
children aged
3-6 years
Indonesia
has relatively
es
Children
who use
pre-school/ECD
services
helped
develop
psychosocial
fewto
ECD
facilities.
This
explains and
partlycognitive
why
parentsdo so
tend to sendlate.
children
to
school
early:
relatively
Susenas
2010
data
show
that72
19 per
. These range competencies
totheir
make
children
ready
forsome
school,
per cent
of six year
olds3-4
areyears
already
registered
in the in
ns serving
cent
of
children
aged
old
were
enrolled
providing
participation
in those programmes was at
first grade
of primary compared
school.
playgroups and
ECD
programmes,
to 27 per cent of
least
one
and
a
half
years.
d 2 to 6 years

mmunity-based
egrated
and nutrition,
er communityng education
entres on Pos
to be
eadiness in six
programmes
d cognitive
or school,
mmes was at

ren

ears were out of


number, 1.4
ol age and 2.1
e, with about
hildren of senior
ed, 9.3 million
cant proportion
ome experience

t for 42 per cent


in the age group
unts for 21 per
ildren in this age

children aged 5-6 years of age.


Figure 5. Gender differentials* in
out-of-school
children
at each
The
access
to and
quality
level, national & province. National

Greater % of girls than boys

of ECD services is
and provincial
values in gender
differential
highly
unequal.
Some
62 perGreater
cent% of
3 to
old
of boys
than6-year
girls
are indicated above each bar. 33
children
hadSusenas
never2010.
participated in any early childhood
provinces. Source:
education or preschool programmes.
In 2009, the
D
National:102%
proportion of 124%
urban children
attending some76%
form of
ECD
programme
twice that of rural
children.
Age 16-18
years
15was
provinces
18 provinces
Whilst some cities such as Yogyakarta are able to
60%of
provide ECD 139%
servicesNational:90%
for 60 per cent or more
Age 13-15 years

4 provinces

29 provinces

1 Pos Pendidikan
Anak Usia Dini: Early
Childhood
National:
115%Education Post,
141%
94%

a centre for a variety of non-formal early childhood education/ECD


Age 7-12 years
31 provinces
programmes,
combined with Posyandu
and BKB.2 provinces
105%

National: 98%

Age 5-6 years


2 provinces

96%
31 provinces

*Out-of-school rate for girls divided by


out-of-school rate for boys

children aged 3-6 years old, Indonesia has relatively


few ECD facilities. This explains partly why parents
tend to send their children to school early: some 72
ISSUE BRIEFS
per cent of six year olds are already registered in the
first grade of primary school.
Figure 5. Gender differentials* in

Greater % of girls than boys


Box
2. Out-of-school
children
out-of-school
children at
each
level, 3.5
national
& province
. National
Over
million
children
aged 7-15 years were out of
and provincial values in gender differential
Greater % of1.4
boysmillion
than girls
school
in Indonesia
in 2010.
Of this number,
are indicated
above each bar.
33
provinces. Source: Susenas 2010.
children were of primary school age and 2.1 million of junior
D numbers of girls
secondary school age, with about equal
76%
National:102%
124%
and boys. If children
of senior secondary school age are
also
counted,
children were out of 18
school.
A sigAge
16-18 years9.3 million
15 provinces
provinces
nificant proportion of these out-of-school children had some
experience of attending
school
(Figure 4).
139%
National:90%
60%
Central, East and West Java account for 42 per cent of
Age 13-15 years 4 provinces
29 provinces
Indonesias out-of-school
children in the age group 7 to
15 years. West Java alone accounts for 21 per cent of the
National: 115%
141%
countrys out-of-school children in this age group. In94%
terms
Age 7-12 years some eastern 31
provinces are higher.
2 provinces
of percentages,
provinces
Gender differentials amongst out-of-school children vary
National:
by level and province
5). 98%
At ages 7-12 years, a96%
great105% (Figure
er proportion
of
girls
are
out
of
school compared
to boys. In
Age 5-6 years
31 provinces
the 13-15 years
age group, the proportion of boys who are
2 provinces
out of school is 10 per cent more than that of girls.
The
proportion
offor
children
who by
are out of school is greater
*Out-of-school
rate
girls divided
forin
boys
in out-of-school
urban areasrate
than
rural areas: 6 and 4 per cent respectively amongst urban and rural children aged 7-12 years;
18 and 14 per cent respectively amongst urban and rural
children aged 13-15 years old.

Figure 6. Drop out rates in primary school, 2010-2011. Source:


Ministry of Education and Culture

4.00%
3.50%
3.00%
2.50%
2.00%
1.50%
1.00%
0.50%
0.00%

Grade 1

Grade 2

Grade 3

Grade 4

Grade 5

Grade 6

Children who use pre-school/ECD services do so


relatively late. Susenas 2010 data show that 19 per
Barriers
cent
of children aged 3-4 years old were enrolled in
ECD
programmes,
compared
per
cent ofthat
The
cost of schooling
is onetoof27
the
barriers
children
aged
5-6
years
of
age.
prevent children from accessing and completing

education. Including transportation, the costs of


sending
child
to primary
is services
about halfisorhighly
The
accessa to
and
quality school
of ECD
more
of
household
income
for
those
below old
the children
unequal. Some 62 per cent of 3 to 6-year
national poverty line. Uniforms can account up to
hadone-third
never participated
childhood
of total costs in
forany
ruralearly
primary
schools. Fees
education
or types
preschool
programmes.
In cent
2009,
of different
may account
for 20 per
of the
proportion
urban children
attending
some
householdofeducation
expenditure,
and more
soform
for
primary schools.
child
moveschildren.
up to
of urban
ECD programme
wasWhen
twicethe
that
of rural
juniorsome
secondary
household
education
Whilst
citiesschool,
such as
Yogyakarta
are able to
expenditure
goes
up,
with
transportation
provide ECD services for 60 per cent or costs
more of
increasing by as much as three times. Even if parents
children
aged
3-6
years
old,
Indonesia
has
relatively
can afford the fees, social pressure to conform
few(appearance
ECD facilities.
This
explains
partly
why
of clothes, ownership and displayparents
of
tend
to
send
their
school
early:
someout.
72
consumer goods, children
etc.) mayto
cause
a child
to drop

per cent of six year olds are already registered in the


3
first grade of primary school.

1 Pos Perkembangan Anak Usia Dini: Early Childhood Education Post,

a centre for a variety of non-formal early childhood education/ECD


programmes, combined with Posyandu and BKB.

Figure 6. Drop out rates in primary school, 2010-2011. Source:

ISSUE BRIEFS

Barriers

he cost of schooling is one of the barriers that


prevent children from accessing and completing
education. Including transportation, the costs of
sending a child to primary school is about half or more
of household income for those below the national
poverty line. Uniforms can account up to one-third of
total costs for rural primary schools. Fees of different
types may account for 20 per cent of household
education expenditure, and more so for urban primary
schools. When the child moves up to junior secondary
school, household education expenditure goes up,
with transportation costs increasing by as much as
three times. Even if parents can afford the fees, social
pressure to conform (appearance of clothes, ownership
and display of consumer goods, etc.) may cause a child
to drop out. Parents may also believe that the returns
to secondary education are relatively low, compared
to the extra costs involved.
The poor quality of education is rooted in the teaching
learning process. Only 27 per cent of primary school
teachers are qualified. This proportion rises to 76 and
84 per cent respectively at junior and senior secondary
levels. Efforts to raise teachers qualifications began in
2006 with certification of in-service and pre-service
teachers. By December 2011, some 1.2 million teachers
had been certified, out of 2.9 million, including those
from religious schools under the Ministry of Religious
Affairs. A recent study, however, showed that teacher
certification and formal qualifications have not yet had
an impact on student performance. Certification of
teachers alone appears to be insufficient to improve
education quality. The delivery of teaching in other
words, classroom and pedagogical skills appear to
be more important. Teachers, therefore, need to be
periodically re-certified and assessed in this area. One
effect of teacher upgrading and certification has been to
double teacher salaries and make the teaching
profession more attractive to qualified candidates.
This in itself is important.
Teacher absenteeism and demotivation are barriers,
especially in remote regions. A study found at least 37
and 26 per cent of teachers absent from schools at the
time of the survey in Papua and in West Papua
respectively. Absenteeism was highest in the most
remote areas. Living conditions, transportation
difficulties, delays in salary payment, lack of
accountability amongst teachers and the low capacity
of local school authorities to monitor teacher performance
and behaviour all contribute to demotivation and
absenteeism. To counter this, the government has
established an incentive system for teachers working in
remote locations, including a financial allowance.
4

OCTOBER 2012
Poverty, combined with the low educational level
of families, may push a child out of school and into
child labour. Indonesia has some four million children
engaged in child labour. Almost two-thirds of out-ofschool children engage in some productive activity. One
quarter of out-of-school children in the 10-14 years age
group have less than four years of education, which
means they will grow up to be functionally illiterate
adults. These figures underscore the importance of
expanding and accelerating efforts in second chance
education and in providing other services that enhance
childrens life options. Comparison of 2009 and 2004
surveys show that child labour has not decreased.
Children who work have a 30 per cent lower
probability of attending school than those who do
not. In Indonesia, child labour is largely a rural and
agricultural phenomenon. Working, however, does
not necessarily eliminate a childs opportunity to
obtain a formal education. Some 87 per cent of
children in employment (aged 7-14 years) also attend
school, but lag behind their non-working
counterparts in terms of grade progression.
The quality of ECD services needs improvement. There
is no regulatory framework for monitoring quality. The
numbers and quality of staff are inadequate, and the
distribution favours the cities. Preparatory training of
staff is short and financial incentives are limited.
Institutional and other constraints form barriers
to having holistic integrated ECD programmes. The
collaboration between various government agencies
at district level is not optimal, making it difficult to
have an integrated approach. Local authorities and
communities are often not aware of the importance
of having ECD services that integrate psychosocial
simulation and early learning with health, hygiene
and nutrition interventions. In 2010, only 12 per cent
of ECD services for children 3 to 6 years of age were
able to provide an integrated approach. Preschools
and kindergartens that teach reading and writing
generally predominate.

Opportunities for action

ducation stakeholders need to promote


education for all children in the community,
and not only for those already in school. Many
parts of Indonesia are now implementing good
practices related to School-Based Management, which
aims to make schools accountable to communities for
delivering good quality education services. However,
school-based management approaches need to combine
with community-based mechanisms that continually
monitor childrens school attendance, ensure their

OCTOBER 2012

ISSUE BRIEFS

progress to higher education level, and identify


children out of school or those at risk, so that
appropriate action can be taken.

the ability to teach at both primary and junior


secondary level. In small schools, multi-grade teaching
requires specialized skills, which teachers often lack.

Strong community-based information systems and


follow-up mechanisms are needed for monitoring
childrens schooling status. The lack of good data for
planning and targeting is one of the greatest impediments
to increasing access to education, especially for
disadvantaged children. Local authorities only have data
on children in schools, but not on children who are out
of school. Complementing school-based systems with
community based information systems would enable
schools and communities to work together, identify
children at risk and those who have dropped out, and
take appropriate action, such as providing transport for
children from remote villages. Innovative examples of
community-based information systems already exist,
for example, in Polewali-Mandar, West Sulawesi. Such
systems would require relatively small investments from
district budgets but the returns would be worthwhile.

Improving education in regions that have fallen


behind will require adapting education policies and
strategies to local socio-cultural contexts. The high
repetition in early grades of primary school in certain
provinces is attributed, amongst other reasons, to
children who are more used to their local language,
rather than the Indonesian national language. There
is also the issue of how to reflect Indonesias rich and
diverse cultures in the curriculum. A third issue is the
low priority for education in certain cultures, such as
conservative societies in Java that favour early marriage for
girls and give preference to boys education. Teacher
supply, distribution and management, particularly in
remote regions, cuts across all these issues. Initiatives
such as competitions, increased supervision, and
performance-based allowances or non-monetary
rewards may be effective in increasing teacher
motivation and reducing absenteeism.

Social assistance programmes need to target out-ofschool children and adolescents. Bantuan Siswa Miskin
(BSM) provides scholarships for poor students, and
Bantuan Operasional Sekolah (BOS) provides school
operational grants. Both these programmes are schoolbased and are yet to reach out-of-school children
effectively. Improved mechanisms for reaching such
children should be established at central or local
levels, so that out-of-school children can return to
school and benefit from school-based social assistance.
For example, local governments can fund back-toschool programmes out of the district budget (APBD).
It is also worth noting that conditional cash transfer
programmes such as PKH 2 do not address the issue of
transition from junior to senior secondary school.
Second chance or alternative forms of education
should be promoted, with due attention to quality
and relevance. This includes life skills education to
equip adolescents with the required knowledge and
skills to manage risks, reduce vulnerabilities and
enhance labour market opportunities.
Efforts to improve teacher quality should focus on
teachers comprehension of subject matter,
re-certification, periodic assessment and training for
pedagogical skills. Thus far, the emphasis has been on
upgrading qualification rather than on competencies.
The budget for in-service training needs to be
increased. Teacher quality is also important in
improving access to basic education. For example,
teachers are not adequately trained for the early
grades of primary school. Under the One-Roof
school (Satu Atap) approach, the teachers must have

The multitude of ECD programmes and stakeholders


require strong policy coordination. Districts will need
to adhere to national policies and principles for HolisticIntegrated ECD. Advocacy needs to focus on the
critical links between ECD and educational outcomes,
and on the importance of combining nutrition with
psychosocial interventions.
More investment is needed in ECD, so that the poorest
children are able to benefit from holistic integrated
ECD programmes. Indonesia has increased education
spending impressively: education expenditure in 2011
was one-fifth of government spending and 3 per cent
of its GDP. However, the 2009 investment in ECD was
only 2.1 per cent of the education budget, compared to
an international benchmark of 4 to 5 per cent.
As part of Indonesias social protection schemes, ECD
programmes in the poorest districts should receive a
subsidy for every child enrolled. ECD programmes are
largely absent or underfunded in poor communities.
Yet children in these poorest communities are the ones
who would benefit the most from ECD services, which
mitigate the impact of poverty on child development.
Central and local governments should therefore support
ECD in these poorest communities. The conditionality
should be that the subsidy only goes to a holistic
programme with nutrition, school readiness and p
sychosocial interventions.

2 PKH: Program Keluarga Harapan, a conditional cash transfer programme

ISSUE BRIEFS
Integrated ECD at community level will require
building on existing services. Communities already
have services based on Posyandu for health and
nutrition interventions targeted towards young
children, and BKB /Pos PAUD for early childhood
education and parental education. In practice, the
volunteers providing these two services may be the
same, but they play different roles at different times,
which makes it easier to integrate the nutrition and
psychosocial components at community level.
ECD should be implemented as a continuum until
the age of eight years. District services that provide
the volunteers with training (health, local family
planning, and education offices) should work together
to ensure integrated training for and effective targeting
of the various interventions, and to ensure a smooth
transition from PAUD to primary school. This will
require addressing the related issues of early learning,
language of instruction, preparation of pre-school
teachers and those teaching early grades.
Districts will need to revitalize and motivate the
community volunteers, since volunteerism by itself
may not be sustainable in the long term.
Innovative mechanisms to incentivize the volunteers
have been successful in certain districts such as
Mamuju in West Sulawesi, where training for
volunteers in income generating activities was
combined with district government support for credit
mechanisms. The governments move to register
qualified volunteers as district-level contract workers
provides an important incentive.

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This is one of a series of Issue Briefs developed by UNICEF Indonesia. For more information, contact jakarta@unicef.org or go to www.unicef.or.id