Issues Paper 16th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers Cape Town, 2006

Pam Christie, Veerle Dieltiens and Keith Lewin Education Policy Unit University of the Witwatersrand Johannesburg
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The theme of the 15thCCEM, Access and Achievement: Closing the Gap, highlighted the concern with expanding access to education and bridging inequalities of educational achievement. The 2006 Conference theme, Access to Quality Education: For the Good of All, focuses attention on what happens to learners once they are enrolled in education. It suggests that attention to access, retention and progression needs to be accompanied by improvements in quality of educational experiences, actual learning acquisition and outcomes. The rider to the conference’s theme, For the Good of All, opens up questions on what it is that individual learners, parents, employers and governments find valuable in education. It points to education as a common good as well as an individual one. This Issues Paper is intended to point to key current issues in education in the Commonwealth, drawing attention to trends, policies, practices and challenges to achieving Access to Quality Education: For the Good of All. 'Issues' in this paper is taken to mean current and emerging debates on all levels of education, from early childhood development to higher education. However, the paper does not attempt to give equal attention to this broad range. Rather, it presents selected topics based on currency and 'volume', acknowledging that this approach does leave out issues that might well be on the agenda for discussion among Commonwealth countries. In approaching its task, this Issues Paper is mindful of earlier Commonwealth communiqués and agreements, including the Edinburgh Communiqué and Action Plan from 15CCEM. In particular, it notes the Stoke Rochford Statement on HIV/AIDS and Education (2004), in which Ministers of Education of Commonwealth Small States note the urgency of accelerating educational responses to HIV/AIDS: We acknowledge the responsibility of each of us and of our education ministries to develop and sustain a clear role for education within national, regional and global efforts to halt the spread of the epidemic, to promote awareness of its nature, causes and consequences for individuals and societies, and where appropriate, collaborate in mobilising care and support in this regard.



2.1 The goal of achieving universal primary education (UPE) has been on the international agenda since 1948, when the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirmed that basic education should be free and compulsory for all children. More than forty years later, the Jomtien Declaration on Education for All (EFA) (1990) reiterated the importance of access to education, and added that improvement of quality was also important. A decade later, the Dakar Framework for Action affirmed that quality was at the heart of education, again restating the importance of access to basic education. As well as emphasizing access, retention and achievement in education systems, the Dakar Framework stressed the importance of the health and

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well-being of learners and outlined a set of desirable processes, content and systems for teaching and learning. At Dakar, the challenge was set out as follows: ‘by 2015 all children, particularly girls, children in difficult circumstances and those belonging to ethnic minorities have access to and complete free and compulsory primary schooling of good quality’. Thus the goal of ‘access to quality education: for the good of all’ has a well-established history. 2.2 In fact, there is no shortage of declarations and goals for schooling, internationally affirmed and monitored. The scope of these is illustrated by a number of examples:

A rights-based approach: Following the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) sets out the parameters of a rights-based approach to education: States parties agree that the education of the child shall be directed to: (a) The development of the child’s personality, talents and mental and physical abilities to their fullest potential; (b) The development of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and for the principles enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations (c ) The development of respect for the child’s parents, his or her own cultural identity, language and values, for the national values of the country in which the child is living, the country from which he or she may originate, and for civilizations different from his or her own; (d) The preparation of the child for responsible life in a free society, in the spirit of understanding, peace, tolerance, equality of the sexes, and friendship among all peoples, ethnic, national and religious groups and persons of indigenous origin; (e) The respect for the natural environment.

A comprehensive approach to learning: The UNESCO Delors Report (1996), Learning: the treasure within, provides an elegant formulation of four pillars of learning: learning to know, learning to do, learning to live together, and learning to be. Education in difficult circumstances: Other United Nations guidelines address education in difficult circumstances, such as the United Nations Study on the Impact of Armed Conflict on Children (1996), the Revised Guidelines for Education Assistance to Refugees (1995), and Action to be Taken in an Emergency. Monitoring: The EFA Global Monitoring Reports provide comprehensive data, systematically gathered, and analysed with sophistication. They include data on provision of education; access, retention and achievement; gender; health of students and teachers, including HIV/AIDS; system performance and quality; and the effects of multilateral interventions and donor aid.

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Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and South Asia account for the majority of countries that have not achieved UPE and for the majority of children out of school. Most notable are the Halifax Statement: Education for our Common Future (14 CCEM. Additionally. In poorly performing countries. many have been unable to do so either in terms of access or of quality. improving the quality of education. In addition. assemblies and communiqués on basic education. comparative test scores presented in international learner attainment studies (such as PISA. poor test performances suggest that school quality is questionable. In many instances. Pakistan. and tertiary level enrolments are extremely low comparatively. 2003). 2.2. This overall pattern has proven difficult to shift. and tertiary education. 2000) and the Edinburgh Communique and Action Plan which specified six action areas: achieving universal primary education. In most developing countries. supporting education in difficult circumstances. given that EFA extends beyond primary schooling to include secondary. while many countries have met enrolment and access targets of EFA. the Edinburgh initiative encouraged member countries to share understandings of what constitutes ‘an excellent education system’. and that are not making significant progress towards EFA.3 The Commonwealth has also added its contribution to action plans for achieving education goals. The EFA Global Monitoring Report for 2005 suggests that the world is divided between a large group of countries that have achieved high and stable enrolments in schooling.4 Given that there is no shortage of declarations. gender inequalities combine with social class and poverty to disadvantage girls.6 Poverty and underdevelopment are clearly related to performance on EFA targets. and mitigating the effects of HIV/AIDS in education (15 CCEM. low survival rates and grade Access to quality education: for the good of all 4 16 CCEM 2006 . using open and distance learning to overcome barriers. 2. And large numbers of children are out of school (estimated to be 103 million in 2001).5 Viewed overall. and a smaller but sizeable group of poorer countries that have not. international conventions. Bangladesh and Nigeria – are among these. it is striking that the goal of UPE has not yet been met across the world. This has considerable implications for EFA goals. SAQMEC. LLECE) illustrate the importance of focusing on quality alongside access. 2. a large proportion of primary school graduates do not make the transition to secondary school. problems are evident in enrolment and completion rates of primary school (including delayed enrolments. post-secondary. In many countries (including South Africa) where most children are attending school. Overall. the pace is too slow to achieve the Millennium Development of Goal of UPE by 2015. including within the Commonwealth. eliminating gender disparities. The four largest Commonwealth countries – India. in contrast to wealthier countries.

Bangladesh. It then explores the theme of Access to Quality Education: For the Good of All through debates on a number of key issues. the Caribbean and South Asia. 2. and these are coupled with concerns about the quality of education and learning outcomes of those who do attend. as evidenced in patterns of retention and achievement. participation and retention. achieving access to quality education for all.8 billion people spread across the globe. defining quality. These concerns continue into postprimary education. for example in the Caribbean and Asia Pacific). Commonwealth countries range across the spectrum in terms of: • • size. rather than repeat the available analyses of education system performances and targets. Access to quality education: for the good of all 5 16 CCEM 2006 . In these countries.9 Against this background. quality remains an issue. 2. Rural and regional populations are not always as well served as their urban counterparts. including highly industrialised states. they are well known and well established through local research as well as global monitoring. Pakistan and Nigeria) and small states (such as the many very small island states. particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa. middle income countries. and social class and gender inequalities are deeply entrenched. financing education in low income countries. including both large states (such as India. and low income countries. 2. and a segment of ‘poorly performing schools’ can usually be identified within the system. and approaches to change. It is a truism to state that issues of access to quality education for the good of all cannot be separated from countries’ overall social and economic development. For those who are meeting EFA access targets. 3 The contemporary Commonwealth and ‘the good of all’ 3.1 The Commonwealth is a highly diverse group of 53 states and 1. economic development.repetition). In affected countries – disproportionately poor – EFA targets will be harder to achieve. indigenous populations often fare poorly.7 In addition.10 The paper considers the nature of the Commonwealth in current times of globalization and the comparative advantages it might offer to participating countries. the impact of HIV/AIDS on the delivery of quality education is acute – and it is estimated that 60% of the world’s sufferers are resident in Commonwealth countries. as does sustaining progress on targets.8 Yet it is important to recognize that social exclusion and disadvantage are evident within the schooling patterns of wealthy countries too. Such inequality trends tend to be masked by overall national figures. 2. this paper invites participants to consider the possibilities and limitations of multilateral action within the Commonwealth in providing quality education for the good of all. Nonetheless. These are: trends and patterns in access.

and those where the majority of children do not complete primary school. education systems and schools may appear to operate with a universal. not international. And they are hard to change. These differences suggest that care needs to be taken in generalizing about education in the Commonwealth. school systems do not necessarily function simply or even well. including virtually all major faiths and secular states. While apparently universal in form and structure. Funding allocations. conditions of work of teachers. Groups of countries might share experiences and draw on each other’s expertise on educational issues identified by joint statements. home background has a greater influence that schools on students’ life chances. there is no evidence that education brings about social equality. They are linked into the political economies and cultures of their communities and countries in multiple and sometimes contradictory ways. While unequal education certainly plays a role in perpetuating social inequalities. and these might be useful in providing feedback on system performance in national contexts as well as global. level. 3. First. from a macro perspective. and are shaped by state policies of all sorts. the provision of education is the responsibility of nation states. As symbolic statements. and provide frameworks within which action might be taken and leverage applied. in multiple institutions and contexts.• • educational provision. While it may be important for social cohesion. While effective schools are better places for student learning than poorly functioning schools. those who have achieved UPE but are in danger of regressing. Second. Global monitoring systems provide comparative analyses on a number of performance indicators. In practice.2 International statements and action plans on education for all – such as those mentioned above – are important in opening possibilities for change. they articulate ideals to which countries might aspire. there are limits to the effectiveness of international and multilateral activities towards achieving quality education for the good of all. functional logic as levers for social improvement. Third. while education may be important in preparing young people for the labour market. private as well as public. education is delivered in local sites. The macro-logics of national systems do not always mesh coherently with the micrologics of classrooms – where quality of teaching and learning is ultimately achieved Access to quality education: for the good of all 6 16 CCEM 2006 . For example. curriculum content and other significant features are crucial in determining access and quality – and policies for these are enacted at national. including those that achieved universal primary and secondary enrolment decades ago.3 However. however. it cannot create jobs. of governments-of-the-day. 3. ideology and religion. Broader social patterns are not functionally linked to education – though education certainly contributes to and reflects them. and within them. education systems are reflections of national and local priorities and resources. local agencies and providers. it does not bring about human rights and democracy.

The development agencies of industrially advanced Commonwealth countries. cultural practices and local opportunities. however distinct their individual features. or repeat. where conflicts threaten global social cohesion. additionally. including supply and demand and how these are resourced. give no indication of the differential effort that is required to meet them. It is very difficult for policy makers to mandate what matters at school level (though inspection. as do international NGOs like Oxfam and Access to quality education: for the good of all 7 16 CCEM 2006 . governance institutions. have left a legacy of language usage (at least at an official level). Multiple levels of administration separate Ministers of Education from schools.or not. or drop out. like DFID. the E9. liberation struggles and national independence. the ILO and UNICEF.6 Commonwealth countries are members of many other global.5 Most Commonwealth countries share a history of British colonial. Though the colonial experienced touched countries in different ways and brought experiences and interests that are not always compatible. or fail. Fourth. 3. laws and learning does provide a basis for networking and communication. the OECD. such as the UN and its agencies. Cultural and contextual factors influence both supply and demand. but it also involves demand. how might the Commonwealth as an association of nation states and dependencies best act together to promote Access to Quality Education: for the good of all?’ There are a number of questions to consider: What role/s might a supranational body such as the Commonwealth play in this particular collection of nation states? Given the diversity of experiences and achievements across member countries. there are complex reasons why UPE or EFA have not been achieved in a number of countries. 3. The Commonwealth provides a forum that affords important connective opportunities in a changing world. particularly UNESCO. what commonalities are there to generate unity of purpose in education? How might education ‘for the good of all’ be conceptualised and brought about under these conditions? 3. the shared framework of language. Statements of goals about achieving EFA are not likely to achieve their intended results without nuanced consideration of local contexts. evaluation and capacity building may go some way to achieve this). the G8. Individual choice and human agency play a role that cannot straightforwardly be controlled by policy makers. multilateral and regional bodies. Such experiences. and multiple actors intervene between policy and implementation. the World Bank and the regional development banks. NEPAD. and the G22. AusAid and CIDA make powerful contributions to the international education agendas. This is not evident in universal goal statements. Access to education involves supply and provision.4 Under these circumstances. And the ideals of global conventions may have little connection with what happens in the daily practices of teachers and learners in their schools. protectorate or trusteeship government. or attend sporadically. There are many reasons why children do not attend school. played out over centuries or decades in different countries. and education systems that bear a general resemblance. which.

in a context of multiple organizations and agencies at work in the world of education? The answer depends in part upon the actions taken by member states to build common interest for the good of all. and promoting dialogue.9 It is commonplace that globalisation. poorer countries find their education systems influenced by aid agencies and multilateral financial arrangements. and a political culture that promotes transparency. Wealthy countries are able to develop their education systems independently. but should decentralise its functions and programmes to a greater extent. These values affect both the way in which the education system is governed and the content of citizenship education. evidence-led studies on HIV/AIDS illustrate the sharing of expertise.10 The benefits of dialogue are exhibited in the records of rich discussions between 2003 and 2006 around the six themes articulated in the Edinburgh Communiqué. with voluntary participation in multilateral bodies such as the OECD. 3. global agendas may be set by some countries to be applied in others. the Pacific. Malta (25-27 November 2005) reaffirmed the Commonwealth’s fundamental political values of tolerance. at least to some extent. has widened inequalities within and among countries. 3. using services locally. gender equality.8 The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. bringing new patterns of inclusion and exclusion. It also presents opportunities to promote South-South cooperation. By contrast. freedom of expression. particularly in financial and economic activity. human rights. The existence of these groupings underlines the point that the Commonwealth should not centralise all its activities in the UK. and in building social capital. accountability and economic development. both within regions and at interregional level. There are also good examples of work carried out across Commonwealth countries that deepen the contextual understanding of educational issues. democracy. 3. international peace and security. while monitoring of teacher recruitment across the Commonwealth enables consideration to be given to the impact that some countries’ policies have Access to quality education: for the good of all 8 16 CCEM 2006 . What might be the ‘niche’ of the Commonwealth. 3.Save the Children. In the current architecture of aid with its inherent imbalances of power and wealth. in drawing on expertise across countries to provide evidence-led understandings of educational practice. The forum of the Commonwealth presents opportunities for exchanges on a more equal footing to counter-balance the familiar donor-recipient patterns of dominance and marginalization.7 The Commonwealth’s reach could usefully be extended by working with and through the regional and sub-regional organisations and networks which in some parts of the world – the Caribbean. SADC and South Asia – have a predominantly Commonwealth membership. in giving voice to injustice and crying need. For example. The Commonwealth has the advantage of a ‘convening power’: in bringing countries together for mutual benefit. the independence of the judiciary. good governance. which have strong support in Commonwealth countries. respect. potentially facilitating more equal exchanges among member states. the rule of law.

3. which works against notions of a common good and global social cohesion.on others. and differentiated as well as shared experiences.11 In the face of the global power differential between member states. and respect for. The Commonwealth Teacher Recruitment Protocol is a good illustration that joint action ‘for the good of all’ is possible. The Commonwealth offers its members opportunities for exchanges of understanding across differences of economy. particularly in relation to educational issues? • How might Commonwealth activities best build networks of social capital to enhance education ‘for the good of all’? • What themes are important to investigate in evidence-led ways to build educational practices ‘for the good of all’? These are questions for member states to consider. Rather. to enhance understanding of other perspectives and vantage points ‘for the good of all’. it implies the recognition of. resources and goods have the potential to marginalise and structurally exclude the poorer parts of the world. One of the Commonwealth’s potential strengths is the network of pan-Commonwealth organisations in education. and all may learn from the experiences of others. multiple perspectives rather than ‘one size fits all’ approaches. Access to quality education: for the good of all 9 16 CCEM 2006 . Social capital exists and acquires value through its use and its connective activities. it is important to avoid deficit approaches to difference. • How might the Commonwealth network best be used to enhance the interests of member countries? • How might common interests be built across differences in ways that give voice to all members. the different experiences and cultural capital of member states may be viewed as a resource. The Commonwealth has the potential to build shared networks of trust and collaboration for mutual benefit – networks of social capital. The network of the Commonwealth offers opportunities for more equal exchange and constructive engagement across such global diversity. Building connections and maximising opportunities to engage with others may be of particular value in current times. and assumptions that there is a single set of experiences that all should share. This does not imply a free-floating relativism where ‘anything goes’ – particularly in education. The Commonwealth is replete with opportunities for ‘learning to live together’ (in the words of the Delors Report) – if member countries act to develop these. Inequalities in the flow of global ideas. the Commonwealth may operate as a forum where all may have voice. society and culture. 3.12 For this to happen. The economic. In a diverse and conflicted world. social and cultural flows of globalisation are capable of producing hybridity not sameness. and their capacity for involvement as partners should be appraised.

causes and consequences for individuals and societies. whether they are themselves directly infected. or are in a situation where their opportunity for participation in education may be adversely affected by the incapacity or death of family members as a result of HIV/AIDS. which we are resolved to continue until. We recognise that Education and research are critical tools in the struggle to contain the spread of HIV and AIDS. collaborate in mobilising care and support in this regard. We are concerned to protect access to education of children and older learners affected by HIV/AIDS. we hereby commit ourselves and our Ministries of Education in the small states of the Commonwealth to a heightened and concerted response to HIV/AIDS. Against this background: • We acknowledge the responsibility of each of us and of our education ministries to develop and sustain a clear role for education within national.STOKE ROCHFORD STATEMENT ON HIV/AIDS AND EDUCATION from Ministers of Education of Commonwealth Small States. We reaffirm the commitment made by Commonwealth Education Ministers at 15CCEM in Edinburgh last year "to include compulsory age-appropriate HIV/AIDS education in the curriculum of every education system within the Commonwealth. but it has a major contribution to make. and that our societies as a whole may need to face up to a variety of often-ignored sensitive issues including cultural practices. At the same time the small scale of our societies brings many advantages of close family and neighbourhood connections that can be used to build defences against the spread of HIV/AIDS and support networks to help those afflicted. and which welcome large numbers of short-term visitors from abroad through the tourist trade. through ill health and death. Education must contribute substantially to our National AIDS Strategies and work closely with the health and other sectors in our countries. regional and global efforts to halt the spread of the epidemic. We recognise that other sectors have an important part to play. the Ministers of Education of Commonwealth Small States. It is our aim to ensure that in every educational institution our students will be given information and services necessary to develop attitudes and skills that will reduce vulnerability to HIV infection. We pledge to extend parallel support to teachers and other education employees wherever possible. 2004 to consider the current and potential impact of HIV/AIDS in our countries and the role of education in addressing this serious issue. including teacher education". to promote awareness of its nature. through education and other means. We shall endeavour to provide the necessary support mechanisms to schools and families to make possible the retention of affected learners in education. to make it possible for those directly and indirectly affected by HIV/AIDS to continue to work in schools and colleges as long as they are able beneficially to do so. so vital to many of our economies. It is one that threatens to undermine the efforts of many Commonwealth member states to attain the Millennium Development Goals for education. many of which are characterised by a high number of migrants and returners. and where appropriate. sexual behaviour of young people in particular. implies for our development. In our deliberations we have been mindful in particular of the affirmation of Commonwealth Heads of Government in their Aso Rock Declaration on Development and Democracy in December 2003 that "strong political leadership and education remain crucial components of the multi-sectoral response to combating HIV/AIDS". We intend that all our future education sector plans and policies shall take full account of the impact of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the necessity to mobilise education programmes to combat it. Access to quality education: for the good of all 10 16 CCEM 2006 . We believe that small states are particularly vulnerable to the challenge posed by HIV/AIDS because of the limited economic and financial capacity at our disposal and the disproportionate effect that the loss of skilled human resources. September 2. 2004 EDUCATION for a WORLD without AIDS We. Greater risks of the spread of infection are inevitably associated with transient populations. • • • • • Education by itself cannot resolve the issues posed for our societies by HIV/AIDS. This includes preparing projections of learner enrolment and teacher supply that reflect the latest expectations of retention and loss due to HIV/AIDS. drug abuse. we enter a World without AIDS. In the light of the above. the sex service industry and so on. have met at Stoke Rochford in the United Kingdom on September 2nd. This poses a particular challenge to our societies. Parents should be involved in planning the provision of such education.

higher education and adult literacy projects. that do exist. in many cases. In the UK. in focusing on the access-participationretention profiles of wealthier countries with historically well established education systems. In focusing on the problems that are evident in the access-participation-retention profiles of low income countries. sources of social cohesion. secondary education. the serious social disengagement among some young people. • Achieving access and quality in higher education involves expenses and investments that are beyond the reach of many low income countries. it is important also to acknowledge the resilience and. there is pressure on financing other levels of education: early childhood development. or could be. able to make independent judgements and decisions. this sector is often poorly served. Meeting educational needs at all levels of the system poses particular challenges when countries face resource constraints. Post-basic education is an important period of transition between foundational literacy and numeracy and the world of work or higher education. the DfES has promised reforms to tackle the persistently poor post-16 staying-on rates in education and training. because recruits into the teaching profession are from the pool of graduates. it is useful to recognize that achieving equity and quality in schooling are persistent challenges that are not universally met by these systems. and in a number of Commonwealth countries this is compounded by the impact of HIV/AIDS. This illustrates the importance of this phase of education.4 Access. Evidence suggests that relevant post-primary education is an important condition for economic growth. • As growing numbers of learners progress through primary schools. 4. Expanding and strengthening secondary education also has a direct implication for achieving universal quality education. However.2 As most countries in the Commonwealth push to fulfil the Millennium Development Goals goals. the disparities are striking. and the basic skills shortfalls. it is important to acknowledge that inequalities have historical and contextual dimensions. Inversely. particularly in establishing the basis for academic and social competencies critical for school and lifelong success. Although higher education is currently unavailable to a majority of learners from developing 1 Where data is available Access to quality education: for the good of all 11 16 CCEM 2006 . and that they are not simple to remedy. Here learners develop higher order thinking skills and consolidate their place as autonomous citizens. In looking across patterns of access. there is the challenge of finding resources to promote secondary schooling. • Although there are good arguments that well developed ECD program have a knock-on effect on quality in primary schools. desirable. participation and retention in education in the Commonwealth: analyzing trends 1 4. participation and retention in education in Commonwealth states.1 The previous section has highlighted the diversity among Commonwealth states and cautioned against assuming that a single approach to education is.

The declaration supports internationalisation efforts already underway. transportation and tourism is listed as a tradeable commodity. From a different perspective. a number of Commonwealth countries are committed to trade liberalization as a tool in combating global poverty. opening up markets to various forms of foreign trade. Despite these fears. increased revenue for educational systems. and may halt the movement of Kenyan students studying abroad (there as currently more Kenyan students studying abroad than there are international students studying in Kenya). it has not led to greater equity. This declaration notes that systems of higher education in Africa are historically under-resourced and are young and vulnerable. the intention of the agreement is that trade in these commodities must become progressively liberalised. although in some instances this has led to growth and development. This suggests that this issue must be approached with caution: particularly in the case of developing countries. The outcome of this workshop is the Accra Declaration on GATS and the Internationalisation of Higher Education in Africa. GATS in Africa The Association of African Universities. In terms of the agreement. Although WTO members are able to specify the extent of their commitments and limitations on each sector.3 Of crucial concern is the impact that the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS). 4. However. and that growth in the sector may further encourage this trend.” However. economic and intellectual needs and priorities of the peoples of Africa” and “cautions against the reduction of higher education … to a tradable commodity subject primarily to international trade rules and negotiations. but does not support an urgent need to formalize these arrangements as trade agreements. and the loss of authority of national governments to regulate higher education according to national needs and priorities. which would be necessary to ensure that increasing foreign provision was not of an inferior nature. broader experience with trade liberalization has shown that. adopted in the Uruguay Round of World Trade Organisation (WTO) talks. and have suggested the implementation of an ‘Aid for Trade’ scheme to provide assistance to developing countries so that they are able to participate in increased trading opportunities. Proponents of GATS argue that this will lead to increased capacity for educational provision. and intellectual capital between countries and institutions. in collaboration with UNESCO and the Council on Higher Education (South Africa) in April 2004 held a workshop on the implications of WTO / GATS for Higher Education in Africa. increased exchanges and the benefits of competition. Needless to say. This paper can do no more than signal these as points for consideration. and there are fears that the commodification of education may lead to a diminished capacity for national educational priority setting and possible exploitation. and overall poverty levels have increased.countries. education. are underdeveloped. government policy in Kenya favours trade in higher education: it is believed that considerable income is already derived in this sector (catering predominately for students from neighboring states with inadequate higher education provision). The declaration states a commitment to “the development of higher education in Africa as a ‘public good’ whose mission and objectives must serve the social. Systems of quality assurance of higher education provision. innovations in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) offer new opportunities for further study that are economically viable. some African countries have made full unconditional commitments to higher education in their GATS schedules: these include the Democratic Republic of the Congo. staff. and Lesotho. access issues are different at these different levels of the system. with other services such as telecommunications. The primary reason for this commitment is probably related to the inability of these countries to adequately resource and grow their own systems of higher education. such as the movement of students. Access to quality education: for the good of all 12 16 CCEM 2006 . participation may not be on an equal footing. is likely to have on educational provision.

These countries have pressing needs to continue to finance improved access to primary schooling. Kenya. America Pacific Overall 61332 148082 3069 786 861 233116 Primary Secondary Out of Secondary Out of School Enrolled School 13219 31132 154 34 196 44832 17385 95068 2505 529 303 131097 31758 107136 985 97 601 140577 Source: UNESCO Institute of Statistics 2005 4. Pakistan. not least to meet the needs and aspirations of rapidly growing numbers of primary completers. 4.6 Many more school age children are excluded from secondary grades. These children are concentrated in a small number of high population countries that include India. Status report: low income Commonwealth countries 4. Where universal levels of primary schooling are now within reach. Primary GERs average over 100% in all regions indicating that most countries have enough school places to enrol all children of primary school age. Table 1 Children Out of School in the Low Income Commonwealth Countries Primary Enrolled SSA S Asia SE Asia Caribbean +C. Nigeria and Tanzania. However.4. Bangladesh. Over 70% of the unschooled in Commonwealth Africa are found in Nigeria. In the low income Commonwealth countries at least 140 million are not enrolled of whom over 107 million are in South Asia and nearly 32 million in SSA. Tanzania. priorities are shifting to establish ways of financing improved access to secondary schooling.7 Gross and net enrolment rates in the Commonwealth illustrate how much has been achieved over the last decade (Table 2). Ghana. and Mozambique.4 Having sketched a broad canvass. These countries alone account for about 80% of children not enrolled in primary schools in the Commonwealth. By far the greatest numbers out of primary school are in SSA and South Asia (Table 1).5 There are about 45 million children of primary school age who are not currently enrolled in low income Commonwealth countries (about 45% of the global total). this paper now focuses on a more limited set of concerns: access and participation in low income countries. several countries still fall below Access to quality education: for the good of all 13 16 CCEM 2006 . with particular emphasis on schooling. Where preschools exist they are generally privately financed and not available to the poor.

indicating the presence of substantial numbers of repeaters and over age children enrolled in primary grades. all countries with secondary GERs above 50% have at least 48% enrolment female. Those countries with secondary GERs below 40% include 70% of the Commonwealth countries in SSA and Pakistan. In the remainder of the 53 Commonwealth countries enrolments approach parity with an average female enrolment of 48% at primary and 49% at secondary (Table 1). At secondary level disparities are more common and nine countries have fewer than 45% girls enrolled. Sierre Leone.8 Average differences in enrolments between girls and boys are now small. Gross enrolment rates at secondary are strikingly lower than at primary. Thus nearly 90% of countries with secondary GERs below 50% have more boys than girls enrolled. Gender disparities at primary remain relatively high in India and Pakistan. Table 2. Asia and the Pacific Islands. Tanzania. 4. and in Mozambique and Nigeria where less than 45% of enrolments are female. America Pacific High Income C’wealth Countries Average 100 104 101 107 103 101 102 74 88 95 95 93 98 91 37 65 79 83 61 123 75 31 59 69 70 52 91 62 48 47 49 50 48 49 48 47 47 51 53 48 50 49 Source: UNESCO Institute of Statistics 2005 Access to quality education: for the good of all 14 16 CCEM 2006 . Gender disparities at secondary are closely associated with low overall enrolment rates. Net enrolment rates are substantially less than gross enrolment rates in both SSA and South Asia. especially in SSA and to a lesser extent in S. Gambia. illustrating the progress that has been made in reducing unequal access across the majority of countries (Table 2).GER 80% including Pakistan. and Zambia. Gross and Net Enrolment Rates and Percent Female Enrolment in Low Income Commonwealth Countries % % GER NER GER NER Female Female Primary Primary Secndry Secndry Primary Secndry SSA S Asia SE Asia Caribbean +C.

and these might usefully be engaged with in improving education systems. Children may simultaneously be affected by HIV/AIDS (either as orphans. 4.4. Gender-related disadvantages tend to be heightened in situations of crisis or disadvantage.10 Viewed as an aggregate group. Women and girls represent an increasing proportion of those affected by HIV/AIDS – nearly two thirds of those affected by HIV/AIDS in developing countries are women. Australia and Caribbean countries). particularly in rural areas and for girls. In countries in SSA and South Asia. In some other Commonwealth countries (such as Canada. unemployment.9 It is interesting to note that in many cases. or in other ways). or sufferers. This snapshot suggests that ‘access to quality education: for the good of all’ within the Commonwealth is still a long way off. low income Commonwealth countries fare better than some of their non-Commonwealth counterparts. one of the challenges faced by Commonwealth countries is to ensure that increased access is equitable across all groups. and/or extremely poor. information gathered by the Commonwealth Secretariat highlights a number of challenges for education in Commonwealth countries: o There are approximately 75 million children out of school in the Commonwealth (out of a global total of 115 million). girls’ participation rates in education are not equal to boys. o Gender issues in education play out in different ways. Within Commonwealth countries. and/or be nomadic. school and individual levels. with the result that full access is undermined. and/or working. Access to quality education: for the good of all 15 16 CCEM 2006 . That said. 60% are in Commonwealth countries. young people in the Commonwealth face high levels of poverty. o Of the global estimate of people living with HIV/AIDS.11 In working to improve their education systems. or care givers. and does not serve to increase inequalities. There are patterns of equity and participation at systemic. 70% of those living in poverty are women. o In a number of cases. o Gender inequality remains a complex issue of concern. 4. the performance of boys has been raised as a matter of concern. illiteracy. Four of the five countries with the largest number of children out of school are members of the Commonwealth. and so on. o The interrelationships of disadvantage bring particular complexities to the difficulties they face. and HIV/AIDS. access to schooling may be hampered by its forms of provision or lack of appropriateness.

• Provision of books for teachers and learners. participation and retention.1 From a system level perspective: • Levels of wealth and poverty have a clear influence on the resources available for education in member countries. they do have an effect in poorer countries. there is a seeming predictability to the patterns of access. • Building or rehabilitation of education infrastructure. have predictable effects on both supply and demand. November 2005 5 Access. and it also influences demand. • Opportunities for economic activity and how these link to education affect the supply of schools. • Resources available for schools may have an effect on learning outcomes. Political economy influences supply of education. This is evident in countries with mobile populations such as nomads. Minority languages often require Access to quality education: for the good of all 16 16 CCEM 2006 . monitoring and co-ordination of the affected zones in order to formulate accurate plans to alleviate disruptions to education. migrant workers. particularly around gender. participation and retention: established patterns Looking across research and monitoring data from Commonwealth countries (and elsewhere). 5. refugees. Ministry of Education and Culture. Effective use of existing resources is an important factor in access and provision. • Supply of tents or the building of huts as provisional schools. the value placed on schooling and on demand.Managing education under the threat of natural disasters in Mozambique Vulnerability to cyclic natural disasters has meant that the Ministry of Education in Mozambique has had to design yearly contingency plans along with its Sector Strategic Plan. Natural disasters set in motion the following responses: • Evaluation. • Where there are populations or subgroups with particular or specific needs. participation and retention. It is useful to recognize what is already known when thinking about approaches to change. participation and retention in education. Source: Republic of Mozambique. the standardised approaches of schooling systems – particularly the inflexibility of school arrangements and their geographical fixity – affect access. and this in turn is a major influence on access. Although additional resources may have little effect in well-established schooling systems. travellers. Country Report for the MidTerm Review on the 15 CCEM 6 Action Plans. • Cultural practices. • Transfer of teachers and learners to safer places. • Psychological and pedagogic support to teachers and learners in order to mitigate the effects of trauma of those surviving natural disasters.

) This broad range of specialised needs interacts in particular with system resources and capacity to influence access. Access to quality education: for the good of all 17 16 CCEM 2006 . children’s health and nutrition affect their learning.2 From a school level perspective. One is that education systems cannot be understood apart from the societies within which they operate – their economic. particularly for students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Most notably.special consideration. All of this suggests the importance of contextual analysis and targeted interventions in approaching change. • School environments and amenities made a difference (eg having separate toilet facilities for girls. physical. many of the variables which affect access. education systems do not stand separately or apart within their societies. • Studies on school effectiveness and improvement point to the importance of leadership for school quality – though the effects of leadership on student learning outcomes are mediated by other factors such as teachers and resources. Often. political. Another reason is that the macro-logics of systems do not always mesh with the micro-logics of schools and their community contexts. for a range of reasons. but less so. again. 5. This suggests that teacher capacity and commitment are important in strategies to improve student participation and achievement. In short. with fewer than 2% enrolled in schools. psychiatric etc – require specific interventions. apart from the obvious lack of resources. but their absence makes it difficult for teachers and students to do their work. • At the level of the school. social and cultural contexts. • For students to have access to the formal codes of school knowledge. ameliorating their effects has not been straightforward for various reasons. they require a curriculum that is made accessible through teaching and assessment strategies. School organizational capacity is an important feature of school quality. on both students and teachers. and they are not amenable to interventions which treat them as if they do. This is particularly the case when addressing disadvantage and children with special needs. Work has adverse effects on children’s school attendance and attainment. (It is estimated that there are 150 million children with disabilities. Conditions of violence and social conflict are disruptive to schooling. Disabilities of various sorts – intellectual. participation and retention. actual and anticipated. However. the individual teacher has the most significant impact on student learning outcomes. these are barely visible when operating well. variables are predictable. so systemic interventions often do not achieve the desired results. participation and retention are well known to researchers and policy makers. • The conditions under which children are living have well-documented effects on participation and attainment in schooling. HIV/AIDS has multiple effects. including having consistent systems and procedures for running the school. providing school meals and so on). People may attend school without attaining lasting literacy. In spite of their apparently universal forms.

particularly in relation to HIV/AIDS. and opportunities outside of school for work and further study. in an overall effort to enhance ‘quality education for the good of all’? • What experiences do member countries of success (and failure) that others might learn from. There are many failed attempts to reform education systems. and one which is difficult to address in policy terms. poverty.4 In short. 5. Targeted interventions are then possible. there are a number of questions that member states might wish to consider in terms of access. • The most predictable is that the match between home and school is highly significant in influencing participation and attainment. 5. Though schools do make a difference on an individual level. they do not compensate for social inequalities. to impact upon later achievement and life chances. in order to work towards its ‘solution’. and it is useful to learn from these. and gender? • What is already being done cooperatively by Commonwealth states to enhance equity and participation for all. • Choice by individual students. The initial inequalities that students bring to school tend to increase as they progress through school. The suggestion made here is that initiatives to ‘improve access and quality for all’ should use a combination of top down and bottom up approaches. For example: • What key issues might Commonwealth member states address jointly. families and communities is another important factor. 5. participation and retention in education. Detailed contextual investigation is necessary to identify ‘the problem’ in each case.• But participation and success also depend upon less controllable effects such as the influence of peers. some predictable. and how might these initiatives be built upon? • What new initiatives might be established? • What research might be undertaken or interventions explored to build educational practices ‘for the good of all’? Access to quality education: for the good of all 18 16 CCEM 2006 . the culture of the school. retention and participation.3 From the perspective of students and teachers. others less so. and a strategic balance of pressure and support based on indepth contextual research and local engagement. a number of different factors impact upon access. and stem from the interplay of a number of different variables – many well known.5 In summing up on sections 4 and 5 of this paper. the reasons why EFA has not been achieved in different countries are complex.

daily attending lessons in immovable structures.5% of the population is nomadic and in1989 the government established the National Commission for Nomadic Education to find solutions for education provision adaptable to the nomadic way of life. Models developed which include primary education in collapsible mobile classrooms and boat schools. indicate a drop in performance in numeracy and literacy in all but one of the countries tested. with fewer than one-fifth of children graduating in the allotted time. With classes growing in size. the Edinburgh 15CCEM called for a sharing of experience and views on what excellence in education consisted of. demand may drop. better quality education could reduce both drop-outs and repetitions. If quality drops and the benefits of schooling appear more and more unclear to parents. content (relevant curricula) and systems (good governance and equitable resource allocation). In Nigeria. World Bank. For example. for example. keeping them there depends importantly on whether they are engaged in purposeful learning. Quality is admittedly poor. Teachers were also recruited from the nomad communities and given specialist training. motivated students). this ideal structured arrangement is ill-suited as they move in search of pasture or other ways to sustain a livelihood. and efforts to improve classroom practice may therefore be self-financing in the long-term. textbook distribution insufficient and the proportion of trained teachers has fallen since the start of the programme. textbooks and educator time. 8. Enrolment has increased from 18000 in 1990 to 155000 in 1998. the massive expansion in numbers has been at the expense of quality.1 Once learners are in classrooms. extension adult education classes and radio listening groups. The initial UPE push to increase numbers of learners in schools was inevitably followed by calls for better quality. but mandates were not precise. A telling concern about EFA programs is that in some cases. As the EFA 2005 Global Monitoring Report points out. processes (competent teachers using active pedagogies). Enriching what schools actively do was a concern at both the Halifax and Edinburgh Commonwealth conferences. the Dakar Framework for Action provided an expansive definition of quality education including desirable characteristics of learners (healthy. The Cape Town 16CCEM is charged with bringing greater precision to the quality mandate.Schooling for Nomads in Nigeria Schooling often assumes stable populations. there is increasing pressure on resources. for example. But for nomadic communities. So. SACMEQ results. But drop-out figures are exceptionally high. 2001 6 Quality in education in the Commonwealth Quality: an emerging concern 6. Access to quality education: for the good of all 19 16 CCEM 2006 . Access and participation in education are only meaningful if the experiences of learners in classrooms are valuable and have quality. with the proportion of girls reaching 85% in 1998.

school-based education systems for all. The EFA 2005 Global Monitoring Report usefully suggests. much literature has been devoted to equating which inputs have the greatest impact on educational outputs.4 The right to education – supported by all states in the Commonwealth – requires states to commit themselves to providing fully fledged. Access to quality education: for the good of all 20 16 CCEM 2006 . and inversely. In seeking to determine whether or not education is of quality. in addition. these are not indicators of education. If equity and respect for human rights are benchmarks of quality education systems. participation and outcomes. The results of these studies are. even a thorough test of cognitive skills does not reveal information on values. that education systems need to be equitable. towards a more complex understanding of what education entails. that correlates smaller class sizes with achievement – and countries such as Hong Kong. inclusive and relevant if they are to be considered of high quality. The institutional structures that we recognise as schools function best when the bureaucratic procedures and processes are in place. cannot be said to be high quality systems. Quality schools do not necessarily guarantee quality education. timetables. but more rigorous indicators would include critical thinking abilities.2 In defining quality. So. Japan and South Korea which have large class sizes also do well on international league tables. communication skills and conceptual imagination. then all countries within the Commonwealth need to monitor their systems in terms of patterns of provision. it is important not to equate education with schooling. attitudes and beliefs. for example. or are manifestly unequal or discriminatory. albeit in the face of resource constraints. clear respect for human rights. The importance of positive learning experiences in terms of creating a positive self-image and bringing out the potentials of individuals are also important considerations for quality. Since it is more straightforward to influence what schools do than to influence educational aims and activities. Achievement of literacy and numeracy skills is a basic measure of quality. in this argument. however. 6. Thus. There is no systematic evidence. often inconsistent or ambiguous. Education systems that lack a strong. regular building maintenance all indicate a quality school. the focus has been on how schools ought to be organised to achieve educational aims. especially from the perspectives of girls and children coming from marginalised situations.3 Quality education relates to the actual learning taking place and is much harder to quantify than schooling inputs. it is possible for quality education to blossom in schools with few resources. it is important to move beyond testing of sets of cognitive skills. in defining quality in education. a starting point is to make clear the distinction between schooling and education. However. daily registers.Defining quality 6. In other words. 6. for example. However.

Australia and the UK. autonomous thought is an essential task of education. Yet it is important not to assume that education causes these changes. in terms of providing learning experiences of equivalent quality to all students. A relevant curriculum for the 21st Century has local advocates who argue for an education that is not detached from national development needs. Thus relevance means something different depending on the answer to the question. in all countries. religion. Secondly. Canada. Analysis of test results from the Program of International Student Assessment (PISA) maps OECD and other participating countries in terms of two axes: quality (indicated by high scores in reading. Education. Those who experience learning difficulties or social disadvantage should receive support to ameliorate difficulties. to reduce education to narrow economic terms in which learners are viewed primarily as ‘human capital’ disregards the intrinsic value of education in individual development. regardless of socio-economic background.6. mathematics and science) and equity (indicated by inequalities in student performance). however.7 In contrast. 6. improvements in health. It also suggests that equity and quality need not stand as alternatives. The right to education. as increasing levels of education correspond with decreasing poverty levels. In practice. as well as education’s broader role in inducting young people into social and political life. is often an essential pre-requisite to the realisation of other rights such as the right to work. the emphasis on education for work encourages the view of education a ‘positional good’. it is problematic to judge the quality of education instrumentally by how well-prepared graduates are for the world of work. And a continuing goal for education systems should be to improve outcomes for all learners. and global advocates who insist on the universal aims of education. that is that it has more value the fewer people have access to it. Countries achieving high quality and high equity include Finland. since it is possible for systems to achieve both. Access to quality education: for the good of all 21 16 CCEM 2006 . Countries achieving high quality but low equity include New Zealand. or that they are central to issues of quality and access. Japan. 6. Education is seen primarily as a stimulus for development. ‘Relevant to what?’ The incentive for improving access to and quality of education in low income countries is often grounded in its most visible spin-offs for development. This paper suggests that encouraging critical.6 Quality eduction is intimately bound up with notions of relevance. in other words. locality. empowerment of women etc. the right to freedom of thought and expression. gender. and Ireland. acts as a selection sieve. race. there are disparities in the extent to which even relatively wealthy countries provide equitable outcomes.5 Ideally in terms of equity. In the first instance. Korea. and may serve as a hallmark of quality education in all Commonwealth countries. This suggests that equity is an issue to be addressed within a number of high achieving Commonwealth countries. all individuals should have access to equivalent learning opportunities of quality. and the right to participate in political decision making.

such as the reading. the size and nature of countries’ economies as well as the structure of international trade have great influence on possibilities for sustainable livelihoods. work. a universal perspective that reaches beyond localised particularities.9 If quality must be understood in context. While a common thread in education promises to offer all learners. for education to be ‘for the good of all’? Given the diversity across and within Commonwealth countries. postcolonial theorists have been critical of the potential corrosion of indigenous. 6. is it possible to define a common understanding of education quality? From decades of documented research. This includes relatively wealthy member states. Education for the good of all? 6. political or economic status.promoting some learners through the system who are ultimately rewarded with university places or skilled jobs. It is important not to attribute social success to quality of education in situations where it is more accurately a reflection of existing social advantage. learners who are excluded from schools and those who drop-out are often predictably from poor families or otherwise marginalized communities – in low as well as high income countries. irrespective of social. It is a task of education to prepare young people for participation in society. it is important for all young people to provided with key competencies for global interchange. in current times of global exchanges and flows. it is clear that there is no single definition of what counts as a ‘quality learning experience’ and no single means of achieving quality. knowledge and learning do not themselves bring development.8 What does it mean. But access to usable knowledge may enable people to take advantage of favourable changes and be more resilient in the face of changes that are beyond their control. This is a matter that concerns many Commonwealth countries. Moreover. then there are at least two ‘contexts’ to be described: the global and the local. many young people – including many who attend school – lack these competencies. Broader social disadvantages typically dictate who the prize winners are. As the Commonwealth of Learning points out. then. That said. Globalisation challenges all Commonwealth countries to engage with diversity as well as with increasing inequalities within and between countries. at both national and international levels. Access to quality education: for the good of all 22 16 CCEM 2006 . As this Issues Paper has pointed out. where inequalities are growing and social cohesion requires nurturing. assessments of quality need to go beyond instrumentalism. and public life. mathematics and science skills assessed in the PISA tests. Currently. However. local knowledge and value systems especially if globalisation has a homogenising impact on culture and values.

the reach of reason can be hard to exaggerate.The debate about whether education should weigh more towards local or universal values – or rather how to balance the two – is more than merely a philosophical question. on a basis other than wealth? Alternatively. for states to provide resources to achieve this as a matter of equity? Does access to quality education inevitably mean more investment in education nationally and internationally? Do the social and economic benefits that accrue when all have access to quality education.10 There are a number of different questions that might arise when considering how ‘Access to quality education’ might be achieved ‘for the good of all’: Given the importance of equity to access and quality. The clash of values systems is illustrated by the controversy over Muslim girls wearing headscarves to school. rather than being put firmly inside little boxes devised by the government. it may be more useful to consider how education delivery may be made more relevant to changing social and economic environments. but also to stress the fact that our diversities can take on many distinct forms and that we have to use our reasoning to decide how to see ourselves. might the quality of experience for all be improved through compensatory funding strategies that ameliorate against the unequal resource endowments of some schools? Is it possible to ensure that all students receive a minimum ‘schoolbag’ of experiences regardless of their backgrounds and special needs. schools may more easily teach to a commonly accepted values base. looking for common approaches to questions such as these may not be productive. But in an increasingly globalised world. Access to quality education: for the good of all 23 16 CCEM 2006 . national and global perspectives is less simple. rather than reduce. Amartya Sen argued as follows: There is need not only to discuss the importance of our common humanity. The importance of non-sectarian and non-parochial curricula that expand. In his keynote address to 15CCEM. (Commonwealth Secretariat. This may be framed in terms of seeking local solutions in global contexts. In a homogenous society. should all students have equal chances to attend schools of proven quality. justify investing even in the most marginalised of students? Given the heterogeneity of the current Commonwealth. Sen’s advice to engage with diversity and expand our understandings of difference poses challenges to quality education in all Commonwealth countries. 2004: 8). Instead. in context-specific ways that acknowledge global changes. the role of education in mediating between local. 6.

often the basic conditions and resources for learning are absent and some commonsense factors may have immediate impact. We journey together. Thus. Improving the quality of education 6. to know where we come from and to claim our own place in the millennium ahead. Welcome. of reclamation of sovereignty. However. Many of those who attend school (and thus have access) do not acquire education of adequate quality through schooling. In many places. concern with quality also entails addressing the top- Access to quality education: for the good of all 24 16 CCEM 2006 . establishing the equality of Maori intellectual tradition alongside the knowledge base of others. as the earlier comments on PISA achievement point out. we can stand proudly together with all people of the world. educational leadership. the problem of quality may relate to the values that infuse the learning process. While clearly there is urgency to address low quality situations. has failed an important element of quality (which their illiterate counterparts may well have passed). Te Whare Wananga provides tertiary level education and research. In all countries. gender and race means that students are not equally positioned to receive the benefits of quality schooling. schooling does not benefit a large proportion of students in terms of building cognitive skills. For learners on the other end of the quality scale. This is in part the dream and vision of Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi. from bridging programs to PhD degrees. Mihi We commit ourselves to explore and define the depths of bicultural knowledge in Aotearoa – to enable us to rediscover ourselves. who has mastered the content of the curriculum but has uncritically accepted racist or sexist practices. emphasis on acquiring at least a minimum set of cognitive skills. and the use of well-structured. to know who we are. We take this journey of discovery. advances and disseminates knowledge and develops intellectual independence and assists the application of knowledge regarding ahuatanga Maori (Maori tradition) according to tikanga Maori (Maori custom). it is possible for countries to achieve greater equity along with quality. the interplay of class. including: strong. The Act states that: A Wananga is characterised by teaching and research that maintains. For learners who fail to become literate and numerate. particularly where minimum resources are absent. purposeful and sustained teaching time.11 The access and quality issues raised so far are different for those learners who receive little genuine education and those (a minority) for whom quality education enables achievement in end-point examinations. A learner. for example.Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi is one of three tertiary institutions designated as wananga under the New Zealand Education Act 1989.

and allowing teachers to create their own curriculum according to the immediate.end achievers – in all Commonwealth countries – who need to be able to exercise critical. relevant needs of their learners. preparedness of teachers has great impact on the curriculum-inuse.12 Along with inputs to schools. Teaching to the test – particularly where the test itself is narrowly conceived – may reduce time on activities that enhance critical thinking. and assessment which reflects depth of understanding across a range of dimensions – these are steps towards enriched classroom experiences for all students. and inclusion. imagination and autonomy of learning. and this needs to be recognised for all educational provision. OBE promised to be a progressive approach to teaching. importantly. so that local contexts are adequately considered when applying policies that may have succeeded elsewhere. Quality education is delivered at the interface of learning and teaching. autonomous thought. An essential factor bearing on quality is the curriculum-in-use. the context of curriculum implementation. pedagogy and assessment). and their commitment to high student achievement. and. including classroom practices. assessment is an important component of quality teaching and learning. The motivation of teachers. results in terms of quality of teaching and learning are understandably variable. 6. levels of resources. particularly given their likely social influence. Thus. However. And this in turn suggests that policy-borrowing needs to be approached with care. a range of teaching strategies. In South Africa. Pertinent here are teachers’ knowledge of subject matter as well as of teaching practices (curriculum. language of teaching and learning. curriculum. whatever the context for this. school leadership and organisation. Over the past decade there have been intensified efforts at curriculum reform. teacher support and professionalism. particularly in response to the perceived impact of globalisation and changes in the skills base of economies. Together with curriculum and teaching practices. there are a number of factors that relate more directly to the quality of the teaching-learning process. careful sequencing of substantive content. Clear goals. Teachers are a key component of quality schooling. their attendance at school and their use of learning time all have an impact on the quality of students’ experience. One typical example is Outcomes-Based Education (OBE) which originated in New Zealand and Australia and has been exported – in some degree and variation – to other Commonwealth countries including South Africa. jettisoning prescriptive syllabi. quality of assessment is important for overall system quality. • Classroom practices that involve structured approaches to activities of intellectual quality are important to student learning. Forms of testing which are oriented towards memorisation and basic skills may diminish the quality of learning. Teacher preparation and continuing professional development are both important in • • • Access to quality education: for the good of all 25 16 CCEM 2006 . Given the differences between the countries that have implemented OBE.

The rights of all learners. For example. therefore. schools that are well led and managed provide an enhanced context for teachers’ work and student learning. and member countries will have important experiences to add. There are a number of examples that can be cited. And other examples may be found to illustrate the differences between policy and implementation in this area. is an important aspect in developing quality education and addressing access at all levels. and social expectations of them are broad factors to consider. be transparent. Teacher codes of conduct have been developed in several countries to influence ethical behaviour of teachers. though they are not always effectively implemented. their conditions of work and remuneration. Zambia has a history of inclusive education in the regions. Many ministries have opted for top-down. Commonwealth initiatives have targeted the training of head teachers and it would be interesting to see the outcomes in relation to access and quality issues. the medium of English acted as a barrier to secondary education until this was changed to national language. the Commonwealth countries have different experiences in regard to a rights-based approach to integrating learners in mainstream education. They are likely to make a difference to the quality of the learning that goes on in institutions. integrated into teacher training and have clear administrative procedures. for example. especially where codes are worked out centrally. The importance of language in learning cannot be underestimated since access to literacy opens up new horizons of knowledge and empowerment. South Africa has excellent policies and strategies but has found it difficult to resource and implement.building teacher competence. Accountability instruments have also tended to increase the administrative load on teachers. Recruitment of teachers. The language of the teacher as well as the language used in the classroom texts and materials (which language and the level of complexity) can be influential in determining quality of the teaching and learning. • As mentioned earlier. In Tanzania. Nonetheless. This list is not exhaustive. with limited stakeholder participation. bureaucratic approaches to keeping teachers accountable. including those who are vulnerable to marginalisation and exclusion through their mental or physical disabilities. and aims for full participation of all learners. Access to quality education: for the good of all 26 16 CCEM 2006 . the effect of school leadership on students’ learning outcomes is mediated rather than direct. • • Another important indicator of quality education is education that is inclusive. To be effective as instruments to improve professional and ethical behaviour. eating into classroom time. In practice. This may also be approached in terms of teacher professionalism. In the past. often without adequate professional support. codes should. Language-of-teaching and learning also has an important bearing on quality and performance.

BRAC schools are a response to community demand. In carrying out its global monitoring. Analysis of the EDIs of participating countries suggests the following: • Countries achieving the Dakar goals and having high EDI scores – such as those in western Europe and North America – have had compulsory education for more than a century. BRAC (formerly the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee). In this way. in order to understand the particular circumstances of poor and good performance. 7. based on lessons from four countries that have Access to quality education: for the good of all 27 16 CCEM 2006 . 7 Achieving access to quality education for all 7. Teachers attend a short 12 day preparatory training. One significant contributor is an NGO. • Countries that are close to the goals – in Latin America. the Caribbean and Central Asia – have a long tradition of emphasizing widespread participation in basic education. a government programme to provide grants to NGOs and CBOs to set up primary schools resulted in an increase of satellite schools from 200 in 1996 to 3884 in 2000. Before BRAC agrees to set up a school. a school building must be available. BRAC schools have flexible schedules adjusted for seasonal agricultural work and books and stationery are provided free of charge.Bangladesh Non-government schools are important providers of education at both primary and secondary level in Bangladesh. Using rudimentary supplies. • Intermediate countries – some in Latin America – tend to lag behind in quality measures while meeting quantitative targets. BRAC schools focus on girls and children of the poor. • Countries that are far from the goals (25% of those supplying EDI data) – mostly in Sub Saharan Africa. a teacher identified and 30 out-of-school learners recruited. it has drawn up an Education Development Index (EDI) on which to rank countries. Ghana and Burundi in particular declined on the quality indicator. Such countries tend to pay attention to all of the indicators: access and participation. participation and quality need to be addressed in combination. • Most of the countries for which data is available show clear general improvement – but some 20 countries show decline – South Africa. but on-going support is well-organised and supervision is given weekly. Pakistan and Bangladesh –have low achievement on all of the goals. BRAC learners perform significantly better on life skills and writing than their peers in ordinary schools and do equally well in reading and numeracy. the EFA project has gathered data from a number of participating countries (though not all) on their progress towards the six Dakar goals. literacy and retention. but including the three high-population Commonwealth countries of India.2 The Global Monitoring Report of 2005 provides a case study-based analysis of determinants of quality. Since the late 1990s. which suggests that there are multiple challenges to be addressed simultaneously. gender parity. On this basis. and to work with these.1 This paper suggests that issues of access.

the paper looks at a number of strategies that have been explored to deal simultaneously with expanding access and achieving quality. More progress is evident in indicators of gender and resource provision than in indicators of cognitive outcomes o Governments appear to play less of a leading role in providing a long-term vision for education o The supply of well-supported and motivated teachers seems less well established. emanating from a strong political vision. improving access and quality entails addressing a mix of interrelated factors over time and in context. and private contributions to education. These differences lead the EFA Report to conclude that there is unlikely to be a single general theory of successful educational change. These include: open and distance learning. the availability and effective use of resources. Case study countries that perform well on EFA have three common characteristics: o A teaching profession held in high esteem.3 As mentioned earlier in this Issues Paper. With this in mind. with a teacher. The political will of governments. Open and distance learning 7. Political and economic context are crucial influences on what may be achieved. with high expectations of quality and well-developed pre-service and in-service training o Continuity of policy over time o A high level of public commitment to education. Nor are changes to schooling practices – particularly teaching and learning – straightforwardly mandated by policy makers. These are not necessarily shifted by statements of goals and action plans developed at supra-national level. All of this suggests the importance of sustained. and the importance accorded to educational achievements all have powerful effects on the provision of education. contextual engagement if access to quality education for all is to be achieved. and seven countries that are strongly committed to achieving them. 7. the provision of education is the responsibility of nation states which develop their own policy frameworks and use a range of public and private providers. blackboard and learners behind desks is arguably not always the most efficient or appropriate way of Access to quality education: for the good of all 28 16 CCEM 2006 .4 Traditional means of delivering lessons. Case study countries that have ambitions for achieving EFA but have not yet reached targets appear to show the following: o Concerns with quality appear to follow efforts to expand access. important though they may be. multi-grade classrooms.achieved EFA goals. In short.

These policies need not be part of a distance education system but are complementary to it. It uses multimedia and. Commonwealth of Learning (2006) The Commonwealth of Learning (COL) provides support for ODL policies and practices. has increasingly turned its attention to information and communication technologies (ICTs). besides delivering content. While it is largely web-centric it does not necessarily limit itself to learners outside a conventional classroom. While ODL may have limited benefits at primary level. Defining open and distance learning In recent years the definition and application of open and distance learning have been evolving in parallel with the arrival of newer and intelligent technologies. such as in the higher education sector. gender. especially where populations are sparsely scattered or where courses are specialised and demand-selective. teachers. peers and administration both synchronously and asynchronously. Today. and in the foreseeable future. and is an important resource for countries to draw upon. Programs have been able to use a range of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) together with self-instructional materials.delivering educational services. achieving good results in terms of teaching quality and student satisfaction levels. Distance education – the delivery of learning or training to those who are separated mostly by time and space from those who are teaching or training. make learning activities more flexible and enable those learning activities to be distributed among many learning venues. also enables a high level of interaction among learners. Open and distance learning (ODL). audio and video cassette. The teaching is done with a variety of “mediating processes”* used to transmit content. Two important OLD institutions are the National Teachers Institute in Nigeria and the National Institute for Open Schooling in India. Flexible learning relates more to the scheduling of activities than to any particular delivery mode. Flexible learning – the provision of learning opportunities that can be accessed at any place and time. Virtual education – includes aspects of both online and e-learning but goes somewhat further. and the COL has been able to stimulate quality assurance activities with partners in Africa and Asia. The COL envisages open schooling that uses high quality Access to quality education: for the good of all 29 16 CCEM 2006 . to provide tuition and to conduct assessment or measure outcomes. and offers useful alternatives under certain circumstances. or time constraints and with recognition of prior learning. open and distance education embraces any or all of the following: Open learning – policies and practices that permit entry to learning with no or minimum barriers with respect to age. implement open learning policies. it is increasingly being used at secondary level. The provision of teacher education at a distance has also increased in size and significance. Online learning and e-learning – terms that have emerged to describe the application of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to enhance distance education. content. at one time associated with postal packages of printed material. The COL notes that higher and distance learning and dual mode learning have expanded access to tertiary education.

But finding flexible approaches to educational delivery will be pressing. if appropriately implemented. and the development of ODL offers much potential in this regard. investment in ODL by governments and the private sector has been comparatively low. including cost benefits. Small schools make up between 20% and 40% of all primary schools in much of SSA and South Asia and are normally located in rural areas with low population densities. may need to be developed. Currently. multigrade approaches. falling prices of electronic hardware. That said. and curriculum materials. It anticipates that the greatest impact will be through mobile phones. and coupled with networks of local centres staffed with trained facilitators. access to these is a crucial consideration for education in all Commonwealth countries – as is an adequate level of education to use them. Access to quality education: for the good of all 30 16 CCEM 2006 . Where resources are limited. multigrade teaching requires investment and resources if it is to bring long-term benefits. Multigrade teaching approaches allow primary schools with enrolments of less than 150 to be more cost effective than monograde alternatives. with failures not necessarily having to redo a whole year of subjects but repeating only those subjects which were failed. teachers may require support and training to adopt new practices. It also has the potential of offering flexible patterns of progression through school. Although the COL has notched up many successes as a resource in open. and are currently under-developed and under-utilised in many Commonwealth countries. including modular units. distance and technology-mediated learning. An additional benefit of multigrade teaching is that it can respond to the realities of mixed age enrolment and overlaps between learning capabilities across grades. Development costs may be significant. multigrade teaching could mean twice as many children experience school for the same costs. and open source software. In small schools.learning materials based on common curricula. many of the Commonwealth’s developing countries do not currently have appropriate technological facilities and enabling legislation. The potential for international online collaboration in materials development is also important. as well as community radio and TV. open a range of possible benefits. particularly if it is learner-centred. Given the significance of ICTs in the flows of globalisation. especially as the impact of the HIV/Aids pandemic takes its toll. sometimes as much as half the cost per pupil. The COL is optimistic that ICT access will improve with increasing connectivity. Quality ODL requires carefully conceptualised learning materials and extensive support from facilitators or educators at the other end of the technology.5 Multigrade teaching is a pedagogical approach that has potential to improve the quality of teaching in all schools. Multigrade teaching 7. Nonetheless. it may have the benefit of reducing costs per pupil.

especially in Commonwealth countries where governments have been unable to meet demand. the obvious challenge to public school administrators is to arrest and reverse declines in quality. non-government providers have stepped in to meet demand amongst those able to afford the costs.Private provision of education 7. state-provided education. and social conflict. There are at least three different aspects to the growth in private provision: • First. or of costs being contained to accommodate low fee levels. private. Questions to consider: • How should governments respond to changing patterns of demand? • How might ICT infrastructure be enhanced. while valid as mechanism of choice. There are concerns that some forms of differentiated demand for faith-based schooling may carry risks related to social stratification. most notably in secondary education. Given that education is recognised as a basic human right. Public education can never be fully replaced by non-government provision. Non-government schools that provide access to the poor can only do so if they are subsidised. even when they minimise overheads to close to zero and pay teachers much less than in government schools. Some do this through contributions from NGOs and faith-based communities. irrespective of social. • Second. with various degrees of control. have equitable access to education. political or cultural affiliation. in low enrolment countries the main energiser of this growth is excess demand for school places. states have increasingly been more permissive in allowing nongovernment providers to operate. If non-government providers dominate. and people be skilled to use ICTs? • How might private providers best be regulated for the good of all? • Does private financing of education open up possibilities for pro-poor interventions? Access to quality education: for the good of all 31 16 CCEM 2006 . Non-government schools can expand access and offer quality. Where differentiated demand is growing as a response to a perceived or real diminution in public school quality. cultural autarchy. fee-paying or profit-making education. • Third. cannot replace public. and because of the role of schools in inducting learners into a common democratic state. but there is the danger of fees being set too high. because of the importance of public schools in ensuring that all learners. differentiated demand from parents and students dissatisfied with features of government schooling is another explanation of growth. Differentiated demand varies from a search for better quality of education than offered in government schools to a preference for faith-based or culturally identified schools.6 Private provision of education has grown over the past decade. with unknown consequences for quality. then private benefit and private returns could override social gains and more general human capacity development. therefore catering only to the privileged. at the expense of quality. Where numbers completing primary schooling are increasing rapidly at rates far in excess of growth in new secondary school places.

especially where historic levels of support have Estimates consolidated in From Commitment to Action: Education DFID/HM Treasury Sept 2005 based on updating earlier estimates in the UNESCO Global Monitoring Reports Access to quality education: for the good of all 2 32 16 CCEM 2006 . including teacher training and tertiary level institutions 8. 8. At least as much again in additional expenditure is likely to be needed to raise access to lower secondary schooling towards universal levels 2 . These challenges fit within the various commitments which have shaped education policy across Commonwealth countries including those made at the Dakar World Education Forum and those contained in the Millennium Development Goals. educational development plans are seen to require more integrated and sectoral approaches that recognise multiple and interacting needs across different populations.1 The financial challenges that face low income countries in the Commonwealth are concentrated around providing sufficient resources to: • • • Maintain progress towards universalising equitable access to primary schooling and extend public support to pre-schooling where this is feasible Expand access to lower and upper secondary schooling in equitable ways since this is now the level at which most are excluded. children in fragile states.2 Other needs are often recognised which have resource implications. Source: Nigeria Country Report for the Mid-Term Review on the 15 CCEM 6 Action Plans. Post compulsory and tertiary education also have substantial needs for investment. Increasingly. and where increasingly access to jobs and livelihoods is determined Generate balanced public investment for post compulsory education and training. • The Virtual Institute of Higher Education Pedagogy (VIHEP) was established in 2003 to improve the pedagogic skills of lecturers through internet-based training.ODL in Nigeria Nigeria has recently ICTs to boost both access to and quality of higher education: • The National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) was relaunched in 2003.3 The magnitude of the financial resources needed to make progress towards the various goals identified at national and international levels is clearly substantial. Globally it is estimated that up to $10 billion a year of additional external support will be needed to universalise primary education. November 2005 8 Financing education ‘for the good of all’ in the Commonwealth: the case of low income countries 8. These include progress on gender equity. • The Nigerian Virtual Library Project was launched in 2003 to enable universities to access books and journal using digital technology. adequate provision for orphans and those with HIV/AIDS and other vulnerable children. and adult illiterates.

It is anticipated that the Fast Track Initiative will develop to support agreed sector plans on a much larger scale than has hitherto been the case.1%) is substantially above the average for all countries in SSA (4. and 18 of the world’s poorest countries have now had their debt cancelled. 8. Estimates of needs across in Commonwealth countries have yet to be consolidated. But after the introduction of Structural Adjustment Programmes in the 1980s. the postcolonial government in Kenya abolished school fees for primary education and gross enrolment peaked above 100% for both boys and girls. Free Primary Education was launched in January 2003. Low income Commonwealth countries will receive their share of the additional resources likely to be come available both from multi-lateral sources and from the four Commonwealth countries which are major donors. It is anticipated that both bi-lateral and multi-lateral aid flows will increase. Access to quality education: for the good of all 33 16 CCEM 2006 . which is predominantly made up of Commonwealth countries. A significant proportion will be allocated to educational investment.5 The allocation of public expenditure to education across the Commonwealth averages 5. SSA countries allocate a high proportion of GNP to primary education. especially among the poor. but it does so often in a context where the unit costs of provision are much lower relative to GNP per capita.2% of GNP and 15. Additional funding is needed for teaching and learning materials and physical infrastructure. but shortage of teachers is one of the biggest challenges facing the FPE programme. But the quality of education is a serious worry. Free Primary Education in Kenya In the late 1970s. as will the proportion of the total which flows through budget support mechanisms. Government increased the education budget by 17. the cost of education was shifted to parents as part of cost recovery measures.4 percent and the total school enrolment rose by 17. With the renewed commitment to EFA. Trends in financing education in the Commonwealth 8. Enrolments dropped.0%) indicating a strong commitment to educational investment (Table 3). However it is likely that the account for between 30% and 40% of the global totals estimated.3% of the public budget. The regional average of GNP for Commonwealth SSA (5. There are still an estimated 2 million children not in school. especially in schools where teacher-learner ratio has increased exponentially. allocates less to education as a proportion of GNP. South Asia. Most South Asian countries can therefore deliver more educational services and higher enrolment rates at lower relative costs. partly as a result of the EFA programmes they have introduced. Enhanced debt reduction will also free up additional resources which will be directed towards educational investment.4 The last G8 meeting at Gleneagles in July 2005 pledged an additional $50 billion in aid by 2010.been low and infrastructure has degraded. with half of this being directed towards Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).6 percent in 2003.

6 15.0 6. GNP/Capita. 8.2 18.1 2.6 2.1 13. America Pacific High Income C’wealth Countries Overall Source: UNESCO Institute of Statistics 2005 8.Table 3 Expenditure on Education in the Low Income Commonwealth % GNP on Education Education as Primary % Public Expenditure as % GNP Budget 5.6 1.6 1.1 12.4 17. will therefore have to be subsidised.2 16.7 1. This places limits on the non-state sources of funding available to support educational services. it also limits the capacity to finance public investment in education from domestic resources. the third is a wealthy small island state) (Table 4).8 SSA S Asia SE Asia Caribbean +C.3 5.3 12.8 1. South Asia and the Pacific.0 5. another from the peak of HIV/AIDs pandemic. and in some of the poorest countries is likely to require external assistance. and reach target levels of participation at higher levels.9 13. and % on Less than a Dollar a Day in the Commonwealth GNP/Capita Population Growth SSA S Asia SE Asia Caribbean +C. and only three countries are growing faster than 3% (one of which is recovering from civil war.4 787 2069 12415 5225 1232 16955 6447 69 68 9 19 Not Available 28 Access to quality education: for the good of all 34 16 CCEM 2006 . On average over 65% of the population in SSA and South Asia live on less than a dollar a day (Table 4).6 15.4 5.5 17.3 1.7 2.2 15.0 0.7 1. at 1% it takes over 70 years.3 2. who are predominantly poor.9 Primary Expenditure as % GNP/Capita 14.6 Most of the Commonwealth has experienced demographic transition to relatively low rates of population growth below 2%.6 12.7 GNP per capita is lowest in SSA. At 3% growth the number of children doubles in 24 years.9 9.7 0. Table 4.1 1.4 6.1 3. This is important for educational financing as it shapes the rate of growth needed to universalise enrolments in basic education. America Pacific High Income C’wealth Countries Overall Source: UNESCO Institute of Statistics 2005 % on < 1$ a day 1. Extending educational access to those currently un-served. Population Growth.

8. Many of these countries are within the Commonwealth. Commonwealth countries set their own priorities.10 The recent UK DfID/Treasury Report: From Commitment to Action (2005) outlines and costs a global agenda to increase primary enrolments worldwide by over 200 million. expand secondary education in 30 countries which are approaching UPE or have very low enrolments.9 Some general indicators of need arise from the recent Africa Commission (2005) report which prioritises increased educational investment across six areas – balanced investment across the whole education sector. Ghana. If these things are to happen then pledges given at Gleneagles to increase external assistance must be honoured. The Africa Commission endorses the target of universalising primary education by 2015 and adds a target of 50% secondary participation. making progress on gender equity. enhancing community involvement. and Nigeria. and Mozambique and in parts of India and Access to quality education: for the good of all 35 16 CCEM 2006 . Financing Progress towards universalising equitable access to primary schooling 8.Ways Forward 8. Tanzania. and developing more relevant curricula. and political consensus must be achieved and sustained about the importance of particular patterns of investment over the medium term. reduce and eliminate gender gaps in participation in 48 countries. Zambia. have wide variations within their education systems that create very different profiles of need in different areas. all of which condition policy and practice. 8. Aspects of this framework may be generally applicable to low enrolment Commonwealth countries in other regions. national plans must be developed and revised that are plausible and likely to result in desired outcomes at known costs. The larger countries. have very different levels of domestic resources available to support public expenditure. Primary enrolments remain relatively low in the Gambia. improve literacy skills for over 550 million adults and increase support for higher education institutions in 35 countries.12 The first challenge relates to achieving and sustaining UPE.11 The three main financial challenges identified have different characteristics and have different levels of prioritisation in different countries. Pakistan. Sierra Leone. 8. Each is considered in turn below. and relate to different sources of external assistance. Pakistan. delivering on existing commitments more effectively.8 The diversity of the Commonwealth means that there are many ways forward and many different profiles of the financial and other resources needed for educational development. especially India. improving teacher education. The smaller countries often have limited room to manoeuvre because of limited resources and increased integration into a globalised world of curricula and qualifications. Papua New Guinea.

formula based staffing ratios. meeting conditions for the release of funds. especially for poor households. Richer Commonwealth countries may be able to consider expanding opportunities to enter publicly subsidised pre-school partly to increase equity. Some countries which experience chronic teacher shortages also need to expand secondary enrolments to increase the supply of those minimally qualified to become primary teachers (e. Tanzania). • Access to quality education: for the good of all 36 16 CCEM 2006 .g. quality improvement subsidies to schools. Some key financing issues are likely to be: • Improving equitable access through more formula based and poverty focused financial allocation mechanisms – e. the additional financial demands created by extending public school systems downwards are unlikely to be easily met (e. than inadequate volumes of assistance available. and subsidies for transport and uniforms where appropriate. progression and completion. Ensuring that fees and other direct costs of schooling are minimal. This is likely to mean that more than 50% of the education budget needs to be allocated to primary schooling and that the public cost per child should not fall below about 12% of GNP per capita – the lowest levels found in effective systems. in Ghana). A concern may be that substantial increases in external support will lead to greater aid dependence where external financing supports more than half the national budget. more use of deprivation indicators to channel development funds. This is already happening in South Africa and in Malaysia. learning materials. Malawi. extending access to include the ‘last 20%’ must be approached through fee free primary school policy that relieves households of all the direct costs of schooling and provides subsidised inputs e. and ensuring administrative infrastructure disburses efficiently.g. The Commonwealth countries with low primary enrolment rates are all likely to qualify for enhanced support from increased flows of external finance. capitation grants.g. Balanced growth is needed such that opportunities to enter and complete lower and upper secondary do not deteriorate.Pakistan. This is yet to become a reality. through policy on fee free schooling. The problems of financing are more likely to revolve around agreeing modalities. If they do it will become very difficult to reach and sustain UPE with high completion rates. Though investment at the first level may need to remain the first priority. In these countries priority may need to remain in directing resources towards improved access. investment at other levels should not be neglected. free provision of learning materials.g. Since those currently excluded from primary are disproportionately from the poor. In poorer countries where publicly financed pre-schools are under discussion.

since high gross enrolment rates often coexist with low completion rates in many systems that have expanded rapidly Promoting gender equity through expanded provision and gender sensitive subsidies where these have proven effects Supporting the development of low cost and free pre-schools with trained staff • • • • Expand access to lower and upper secondary schooling in equitable ways 8. As primary schooling has become more common it has ceased to command a value in the 3 See the Secondary Education in Africa programme of the World Bank for extensive discussion of financing issues in SSA (http://www. increase the supply of possible teachers needed to sustain UPE. The consequence of success in approaching universal primary education is that much greater numbers of children are seeking secondary school places. Access to quality education: for the good of all 37 16 CCEM 2006 . The lowest secondary enrolment rates occur in several SSA countries and in Papua New Guinea and Pakistan where overall less than 20% are likely to complete the first cycle of secondary schooling successfully. In some countries the output of the primary school system may triple before 2015. More than a third of Commonwealth countries have Gross Enrolment Rates at secondary below 50% suggesting that in most case less than 40% of children are enrolled. This seems unbalanced and inequitable.13 The second challenge is increasing in and relates to financing expanded access to secondary schooling. For these countries there is a dual challenge concerning how to consolidate higher enrolments and simultaneously improve quality so that more complete successfully. Depending on levels of primary enrolment. Investment post-primary and pre-tertiary has been the most neglected sector in several of the poorest countries. Most low income Commonwealth countries have enrolment rates at secondary between 30% and 70% suggesting that less than half of all children succeed through the secondary cycle. and improve the knowledge. The number of successful completers may be no more than half this. investment in expanded secondary education is likely to be a priority in order to increase and redistribute opportunity. skill and capability of the labour force.• Training and appointing sufficient qualified primary teachers to maintain pupil teacher ratios at acceptable levels of 40:1 or less through efficient and effective teacher education systems Investing in curriculum reform and learning materials and other quality enhancing inputs to ensure that rapid expansion does not undermine learning achievement Investing in measures to reduce premature drop-out and minimise repetition so that completion rates improve. Some allocate more expenditure to tertiary education than to all secondary schooling 3 .

Reducing the direct costs of secondary schools to allow expanded participation from poor households Improving school governance and school management to generate efficiency gains and lower costs per pupil whilst increasing time on task. All high enrolment systems operate at ratios of primary to secondary costs of less than 2:1. These cost ratios cannot be sustained in mass participation systems. and can be high cost. In the poorest Commonwealth countries over 70% of the population exists on less than a dollar a day. especially beyond the school leaving age. It implies that expanded access must be partly publicly subsidised if it is to reach out to those with lower household incomes. Household income is a very strong predictor of participation to the extend that in SSA children from the richest 20% may be 10 times more likely to be enrolled in secondary school than those from the poorest 40% of households. Reducing elective boarding and/or introducing cost recovery for non-essential boarders. This creates a challenge to expand access to secondary schooling and to invest in distributing quality more evenly. Amongst other things this has resulted in high levels of polarisation whereby in some low income Commonwealth countries more than 75% of university applicants come from less than 10% of the schools. This largely precludes their participation in unsubsidised and private secondary education of all but the relatively wealthy. One reason is that in many countries secondary schooling is not free. Some key financing issues are likely to be: • • Matching growth in new secondary school places to increased demand arising from greatly expanded numbers of primary completers Reducing the public costs per student at secondary level where these are high relative to primary and to GNP per capita to allow expansion at sustainable cost. clearly without subsidy many children will not be able to afford the direct costs at current levels. Though some elements of cost sharing may be desirable at secondary level. • • • Access to quality education: for the good of all 38 16 CCEM 2006 . Secondary schooling is typically four to six times as expensive as primary schooling in SSA and South Asia in terms of public costs per child. Secondary schooling is very unequally distributed where enrolment rates are low. In some countries this ratio exceeds 10:1 especially where subsidised boarding is offered at secondary level. In these systems costs per secondary child rarely exceed 30% of GNP per capita.labour markets and social mobility has become more and more associated with secondary school access and completion. Thus secondary expansion must be accompanied by efficiency gains and lower unit costs if it is to be sustained.

defunct equipment.g. residential. no functioning information services and access to the internet) hard choice may be necessary about the viability of institutions. Where public investment in undergraduate programmes exceeds that in post school further education targeted on developing middle level skills the match with labour market demand may be fragile. Balance can only be established within specific socio-economic contexts where goals are clear. In some countries teacher education is a priority area for investment. Existing training systems may be too long (three of four years). as is the case in several SSA Commonwealth countries. and too expensive to massify in time to meet demand. private rates of return may be higher than public rates of return. and increasingly higher education services are being traded across borders within the development of a global business in education and portable qualifications with value in different labour markets. This problem is becoming particularly acute where rapid progress to universalising secondary schooling is under consideration. teacher training. Alternative methods to full time. and in high enrolment countries.• • • Investing in curriculum reform to meet the needs of new students drawn from a wider cross section of households who will enter changing labour markets Investing in teacher education to meet the need for new secondary teachers Deferring high cost specialised vocational education and training to at least the end of lower secondary. pre-career training may need developing and financing. Where investment in higher education has collapsed to the point where infrastructure is insufficient to support learning (e.14 The third challenge concerns financing of post-compulsory education and training. At the post-compulsory level financing issues often become complex since systems often mix public and private providers. This is because expanded primary and secondary schooling requires massive numbers of new trained teachers often well beyond existing capacity to train. participation may be very skewed towards the relatively wealthy. and which seeks to maximise the benefits of mixing public and private financing to generate most access and support quality. Those countries which allocate more public funds to universities than all secondary schooling almost certainly are not making optimal choices in education investment. the end of upper secondary unless there are strong indicators of effective demand Generate balanced public investment for post-compulsory education and training 8. and tertiary level programmes within a balanced framework that generates appropriate distributions across education sub-sectors. no journal access. Access to quality education: for the good of all 39 16 CCEM 2006 .

with independent evaluations of demonstrated benefits at affordable capital and recurrent costs • • • • • • • Sri Lanka In 1998. especially those associated with the internet. 2005:51 Access to quality education: for the good of all 40 16 CCEM 2006 .Some key financing issues are likely to be: • Developing consensus on desired levels of intake and output of publicly financed higher education and other post school institutions linked to national development plans which identify comparative advantages and developmental benefits and mobilising funds to meet the needs identified Balancing the competing claims of primary and secondary school expansion. The comprehensive approach addressed all issues believed to make a difference for quality and focused on changing teacher behaviour and developing built-in monitoring and evaluation capacity. with those to rehabilitate and extend access to post school and higher education in the context of commitment to the MDGs and Dakar Targets Matching the need to continue to subsidise students from poor households with needs to recover more of the costs of higher education from those who can afford to pay and from those for whom private rates of return are high including managing loan and bursary systems designed to encourage widening participation and recover some costs Managing. especially among poor learners. Sri Lanka initiated reforms in primary education after it performed poorly in the international comparative tests of 1997. There has been a modest improvement in examination results.” EFA Global Monitoring Report. information systems. and teaching and research environments Investing in and subsidising the costs of teacher education to ensure and adequate supply of primary and secondary school teachers Identifying cost effective opportunities to invest in new learning technologies. “The reform process involved consultation and mobilisation of society (including children). although less so among the Tamil population in conflict-ridden northern Sri Lanka. regulating and quality assuring private sector and cross national providers of post school education services Responding to patterns of mobility amongst trained professionals between richer and poorer countries where training in one country results in employment in another Encouraging partnerships between national tertiary institutions across countries to generate economies of access to leading edge facilities.

filling some financial gaps may not enhance access or outcomes if the reasons for low performance are located in non-financial constraints on growth. World Bank IIEP Newsletter. “This positive experience suggests that corruption can be effectively tackled when the restructuring of regulatory systems are complemented by a systematic effort to inform citizens of their entitlements. Uganda and Zambia. Ideally this should form part of an integrated cross-sectoral planning process linked to a framework for poverty reduction (e. 18 local governments and three central government ministries were surveyed. appropriate forms of decentralisation and delegation of responsibility. The reasons vary but may be ameliorated by more effective and timely expenditure tracking down to the school level. only 13 percent of the annual capitation grant per learner reached the school between 1991 and 1995. Vol. The Ugandan government reacted by holding officials accountable by making financial information publicly available. Tanzania. No. This places obligations on both donors and recipients. the reduction was significantly higher for schools with access to newspapers. how sensitive such financing gaps are to different cost drivers. Country Director. greater transparency and adherence to the recommendations of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness. When PETS was first conducted in Uganda in 1996. Access to quality education: for the good of all 41 16 CCEM 2006 .15 Educational financing needs across Commonwealth countries vary greatly. It should then be clear how large the gaps are. or PETS. have been conducted in Ghana. 4.” Ritva Reinikka. Finance gaps – the difference between what is available from domestic resources and that which is needed to meet policy objectives and achieve the MDGs and Dakar targets – need to be identified at a country level. 250 public primary schools. amongst others. Though much external assistance is well used. the PRSP process). October-December 2005 Concluding remarks on financing 8. Not all financial gaps should be filled since they may arise from perpetuating inefficient or ineffective practices from the past. Following the survey a number of district education officers were indicted and it appears much of the money was lost to private gain. and increase their ability to monitor and challenge abuses of the system. Interestingly.g. and what the options are to increase progress towards desired goals most efficiently.PETS: tracking resources Public expenditure tracking surveys. patronage politics and funding political activities. on average. and clear actions to deliver on commitments to greatly enhance external assistance between now and 2015. more use of the methods of performance based budgeting. and are key instruments in determining how much education resources originally allocated actually reach schools. The value of external assistance must continue to be enhanced through effective accountability. The findings showed that. significant but unknown amounts fail to have the intended impact on service provision. It published monthly intergovernmental transfers of capitation grants in the press and asked primary schools to post information on in-flows of funds for all to see. Leakages were reduced from an average of 78 percent in 1995 to 18 percent in 2001. XXIII.

however. Where financing gaps persist. Non-recurrent provincial spending is then spread on a 35-25-20-15-5 distribution curve. Inequalities in education are part of broader social. There are two important axes for redistribution in the system: inter-provincial and intra-provincial. the formula has been adjusted to reflect historically accumulated backlogs more accurately. the proportion of the budget effectively transferred from “least poor” to “most poor” is small. it may be more valuable to work towards context-relevant initiatives. external flows of resources will be critical. The “least poor” schools. and enhanced learning outcomes can be planned. In effect then. Personnel costs are generally distributed equally (and in fact the bias is towards the wealthier schools which qualify for additional staff based on broader subject choices). greater progression rates. It may also encourage increased domestic resource mobilisation. and though these trends are known. make up the shortfall through the collection of higher user fees. The most important policy driver to address inter-provincial inequities is the equitable share formula. To be effective they too need to be cast within a consistent medium term expenditure framework that creates predictable budget envelops within which expanded access. A major concern. In recent years. The Constitution (Section 214 (1) and (2)) provides for an Act of Parliament to outline the annual equitable division of national resources taking into account a range of considerations including economic disparities within and among the provinces (214 (2g)). with just 5% of non-personnel funding. Schools are slotted into one of five quintiles ranging from “poor” to “least poor”. economic and historical trends. with the equitable funding formula is that it deals only with the nonrecurrent spending and not with personnel costs which make up the vast bulk of education budgets (as much as 90%).Adequate financing of educational development always depends on high and sustained levels of political commitment within countries. consolidated. 9 Addressing change 9. including the distribution of capital needs in education. either within or between countries. This can generate consistent and predictable resource flows into different education sub-sectors designed to build capacity. the size of the rural population in each province. Rather than Access to quality education: for the good of all 42 16 CCEM 2006 . The equitable share formula reflects the size of the school-age population and the number of learners enrolled in public ordinary schools. Resources for education come from the national fiscus. Pro-poor spending in South Africa Given the backlogs and inequities in education that are a result of apartheid policies. These patterns are evident in both access and quality in education. The most important intra-provincial mechanism for redistribution of resources is the progressive distribution of non-recurrent expenditure. Rather than seeking ‘one size fits all’ approaches to education. and sustained. based on the conditions of the school and the poverty of the community served by the school. hospital facilities.. the democratic government in South Africa has developed finance policies that redress expenditure in favour of poorer schools.1 This Issues Paper has argued that there is great diversity in the educational experiences of Commonwealth countries – predictable though some of the broader patterns may be. and improve effectiveness. they are not easy to shift. and the size of the target population for social security grants weighted by a poverty index. collected from a central revenue service. increase access.

9. consideration of HIV/AIDS is important.4 From ‘the top’: system-level measures (In all of the points that follow.assuming idealized notions of access and quality. 9. as well as a long-term vision for education. there will be opportunities for Commonwealth countries to significantly address challenges of Access to Quality Education: For the Good of All. the appropriateness of these depends on in-depth analysis of conditions in national and local contexts. to promote awareness of its nature causes and consequences for individuals and societies. as will political agreement to sustain particular patterns of investment and provision of education over the medium term at least. recognizing the commitment of Commonwealth Ministers of Small States to ‘develop and sustain a clear role for education within national. 9. success in achieving access and quality in education requires political commitment and leadership. monitoring and revision of national plans to reach desired outcomes will be required on the part of Commonwealth countries. In all cases. where appropriate. as are enabling legislation and regulations to Access to quality education: for the good of all 43 16 CCEM 2006 . The development. Not least are possibilities for building networks of social capital. • To achieve access and quality in education systems.2 The paper has suggested that the Commonwealth has the potential to provide a forum where the global power differential between countries may be differently configured so that all have voice. and all may learn from the experiences of others. consistent policy frameworks are important. What follows is an ‘ideal-type’ list of components to be considered. as well as common understandings of ‘the good of all’ in times of heightened global divides. allowing influence to operate at the margins as well as the centre. regional and global efforts to halt the spread of the epidemic. In addition. How might these tasks be approached? We suggest that a combination of ‘topdown’ and ‘bottom-up’ perspectives may be heuristically useful in thinking through educational change. a forum such as the Commonwealth opens different possibilities for exchange between countries. the Commonwealth offers important possibilities for South-South collaboration. ideas and goods have the potential to marginalise and exclude poorer parts of the world.3 If the pledges given at Gleneagles to increase external assistance to low income countries are honoured. and. it may be more valuable to engage with the possibilities and limitations of actual situations in working with what is known about education for the good of all. • As mentioned earlier. collaborate in mobilising care and support in this regard’ (Stoke Rochford States on HIV/AIDS and Education). within and across regions. Consistent policy and political commitment to education will be important. Where global inequalities in the flow of resources. This could be enhanced by greater decentralization of Commonwealth functions and programs from the UK to other parts of the world.

A legal definition of entitlements may go some way towards this. These need to stretch from government departments to schools. • System efficiency is important in using resources well and avoiding wastage. resources and opportunities for teacher support and capacity-building. This approach begins by looking at the smallest unit of educational change. NGOs. • Centralised policy frames need also to allow for local agency. • Investment in education needs to be adequate. or where historical imbalances need redress measures. what support might schools need from education departments in order to support the work of teachers and students? And what support might education departments need from governments? The next question would then be: what support might the Commonwealth give governments to enable them to support desired outcomes at the smallest unit of the system. The following chain of backward mapping provides an example of how this approach might operate to as a micro-contextual framing for macro-system planning. teachers and communities. participation.5 From ‘the bottom’: institutional-level and community measures: One way to approach thinking about educational change from ‘the bottom’ is to adopt a backward mapping heuristic. to which the system and its schools can realistically be held.accompany these. ownership and innovation. • Planning needs to include consideration of the complexities of implementation. and conditions of work and remuneration that attract suitable candidates into teaching. namely teachers and students in classrooms. and in providing stable contexts for schools to operate. namely the interface of students and teachers in classrooms. Timeframes need to be realistic. a culture of valuing teacher professionalism as a basis for teacher accountability. The conventionally stipulated target of 6% of GNP may be insufficient where GNP itself is low. What sorts of changes are desired. Access to quality education: for the good of all 44 16 CCEM 2006 . public-private partnerships of all sorts. HIV/AIDS considerations are woven into this exercise. • A range of accountability measures needs to be established. and changes need to be sustained and consistent. Local contexts need to be taken into account. Policies need to allow for the participation of other non-state actors – private resources. and how might they be supported at classroom and school level? Continuing to think backwards. in terms of both capacity and will. 9. • Access and quality depend on proper investment in teachers. but it is not sufficient without resources and political commitment. This includes initial training and continuing professional development.

o What learning outcomes are desired for students. o What reforms are required at institutional level eg in leadership and management. nutrition. to provide opportunities for individual development. health. deployment and development. educated. pedagogy and assessment? How might teachers best be recruited. in working with local communities etc? o Organisational considerations of HIV/AIDS. relationships across the boundaries of the school to allow for outside influences and resources. sequencing. culture and language. eg whole school policies. predictable rhythms of learning. HIV/AIDS effects. lesson planning etc.• Begin from the position of students as the smallest unit of change. and so on. concepts. aims. adequate resourcing. understanding how students learn o Assessment – moving beyond basic skills to include creative thinking. mix of skills. to whom. in teacher recruitment. what is required to support the work of teachers and students? o This includes providing safe and secure environments. learning materials. Age-appropriate and gender-sensitive teaching about HIV/AIDS o Pedagogy – appropriate teaching methods for different levels and tasks. their students and their communities. supported by teachers in classrooms: o Who are the students? (Consider. structures for time on task. remunerated. content. skills and values are required for teachers to achieve expertise in curriculum. and so on • How might education departments best support schools? o What forms of support and pressure might departments provide to schools? What forms of accountability and monitoring are most likely to achieve improved student learning and teacher professionalism? o What capacities do departments require to provide contexts within which schools may optimally operate? How might these be built and sustained? How might efficiency and effectiveness be enhanced? Access to quality education: for the good of all 45 16 CCEM 2006 . language of instruction. for example: community characteristics. supported and held accountable in their performance? What knowledge about HIV/AIDS do teachers need in order to support themselves. in both academic and social? (Given that schools are expected to teach students the formal codes of knowledge. distance from school and means of travel. values. and so on). personnel planning and support. wellness. school and community awareness. and to prepare students for social and economic participation beyond the school. content. etc. effective leadership and management. complex problem solving etc • What knowledge. pedagogy and assessment are required to achieve the desired academic and social outcomes from students? o Curriculum – structure. sound governance.) • What curriculum. • At the level of school organization. how may they be prepared to know how and what to teach about HIV/AIDS.

10 Concluding comment: Access to Quality of Education: for the Good of All? Clear political commitment and a long term vision for education. consistent policies. these are framed by the broader economic. may be necessary to achieve results. in the practices of teachers and the learning outcomes of individual students. support for teacher professionalism.o What planning and support is needed on HIV/AIDS policies and practices. for the good of all. for human resource consequences of illness and death of teachers? • What can governments best do to support education departments? How might ministry commitment to addressing the impact of HIV/AIDS be given effect through education? • What can international organizations best do to support national governments? What might be done to address the impact of HIV/AIDS and support countries and their education systems? How might consistency of approach be supported and fragmentation avoided? How might systems of mutual accountability best be put in place? A backward mapping approach such as this may be helpful in illuminating the complex nature of educational change and the difficulties of achieving it through the many layers of the systems that deliver education. And they are expressed at macro-systemic levels as well as micro levels. political and cultural contexts of countries. is to be achieved. and in particular. contextually based and targeting different levels of the system. As dimensions of educational quality. from macro to micro and micro to macro. for the good of all? Access to quality education: for the good of all 46 16 CCEM 2006 . We suggest that a strategic combination of policy initiatives. high expectations. across the diverse member countries of the Commonwealth. What actions might this Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers take towards achieving access to quality of education. adequate resourcing – these appear to be some of the major ingredients for consideration if access to quality of education.

Acknowledgements This paper draws on the rich documentation available through the Commonwealth and its agencies (in particular the Education Section of the Commonwealth Secretariat) and also on the EFA Global Monitoring Reports and UNESCO and OECD materials. Access to quality education: for the good of all 47 16 CCEM 2006 . Pam Watson and the Commonwealth of Learning are gratefully acknowledged. as are the comments of anonymous reviewers from ComSec. Thanks are due to members of the South African Department of Education and the Education Section of the Commonwealth Secretariat for support. Contributions from Nicholas Dieltiens.

Malawi 96.4 92...4 United Republic of Tanzania Commonwealth South Asia 68.1 93. Country Total.7 Bangladesh 87......3 South Africa 75..9 Namibia 67.3 75.. Total...5 Kenya 85..24 Access to quality education: for the good of all 48 16 CCEM 2006 .. 2002/2003 80. education (%).5 84.1 Seychelles .. 2002/2003 Female.8 78.6 Lesotho .4 Swaziland .7 Botswana .1 50 Pakistan .2 60. 2002/2003 SSA mean 84 85.1 2002/2003 Female..9 82.8 India 93..8 88.APPENDIX Selected statistics for education in Commonwealth countries Net Enrolment Ratios.5 66.3 80.2 Nigeria 99. 77. Sri Lanka SAS mean 83. Singapore ...1 Malaysia 92.. .. .3 52.. education (%).7 Mozambique 78... Sierra Leone 89 89. .6 Mauritius 55..7 Zambia NER in primary NER in primary Country education (%).4 76. primary and secondary Commonwealth Sub Saharan Africa NER in primary NER in primary education (%). Cameroon 78.22 81..4 67. .6 99.2 Gambia 59 . . Uganda 77.6 Maldives 59. . Ghana 66.0 78.6 97..

1 95. 4.6 83...4 95. .... Total.3 82.5 NER in primary education (%).6 79.Region World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific World and regional NER in primary education (%). .1 4....6 88..5 63..1 59.3 12 14.3 20.8 95. 2002/2003 84.9 92.2 88 89 91.6 89 89. .. . ..9 80. Total..9 Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa Gross Enrolment Ratios Country true Antigua and Barbuda Botswana Fiji Kiribati Malawi Mozambique Nauru Singapore Sri Lanka Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Swaziland Zambia Sierra Leone Uganda Nigeria Cameroon Gambia Solomon Islands GER in pre-primary education (%).. 2002/2003 82. 2002/2003 .2 82....9 95.. .6 89. .9 79.7 95... .5 Access to quality education: for the good of all 49 16 CCEM 2006 . ... .9 18... Female. .1 96.

Bangladesh United Republic of Tanzania Namibia Belize Tonga Lesotho Bahamas South Africa India Maldives Ghana Pakistan Kenya Brunei Darussalam Dominica Papua New Guinea Cyprus Saint Lucia Canada Trinidad and Tobago Vanuatu United Kingdom Tuvalu Jamaica Grenada New Zealand Barbados Mauritius Seychelles Malaysia Malta Australia Guyana Saint Kitts and Nevis

20.6 23.9 27.5 28.8 29.4 29.6 30.4 31.6 34 46.6 47 47.3 48.2 48.5 51 58.2 59.6 64.1 64.6 66.4 75.6 77.7 82.4 85.7 85.8 88.4 88.5 88.6 98.6 98.8 100 101.7 120.2 163.5

Access to quality education: for the good of all


16 CCEM 2006

Net Enrolment Ratios, primary
Region Commonwealth South Asia Sub Saharan Africa Latin America & Caribbean East Asia & Pacific World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa NER in primary education (%), Total, 2002/2003 83.2 77 93.2 94.2 84.6 89.1 95.6 83.2 82.6 89 89.9 92.1 96.4 95.3 82.5 63.5

Access to quality education: for the good of all


16 CCEM 2006

Net enrolment ratios, secondary
Region Commonwea lth South Asia Sub Saharan Africa Latin America & Caribbean East Asia & Pacific NER in secondary education (%), Total, 2002/2003 55.3 39.7 79.9 63.3 56.1 84.7 91 50.1 56.1 83.4 83.4 64.3 65.7 90.6 43.6 22.1

World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa

Net Enrolment Ratios: top and bottom performers Top 10 NER primary 2002
Equatorial Guinea Lesotho Rwanda South Africa Morocco Togo Mauritius Sao Tome and Principe Cape Verde Seychelles Commonwealth shaded 84.6 85.8 86.7 89 89.6 91.2 96.6 97.1 99.2 99.6

Access to quality education: for the good of all


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4 12.8 35.6 58 65.4 59 Top 10 NER secondary 2002 Gambia Zimbabwe Morocco Ghana Namibia Botswana Cape Verde South Africa Mauritius Seychelles Commonwealth shaded 32.Bottom 10 NER primary 2002 Djibouti Burkina Faso Niger Mali Eritrea Ethiopia Congo Mozambique Burundi Ghana Commonwealth shaded 35.4 99.7 36.9 Bottom 10 NER secondary 2002 Niger Burundi Burkina Faso Chad Mozambique Mauritania Uganda Ethiopia Benin Guinea Commonwealth shaded Access to quality education: for the good of all 6.2 44.2 16.2 51.1 54 55.2 53.7 33.4 20.6 9 10.5 18.8 53 16 CCEM 2006 .5 74.6 36.5 45.1 16.1 8.2 44.3 57.2 38.1 20.

6 48 54 82. 2002/2003 71.2 82.4 84.2 88 89 91.8 67.1 81. Female.3 39.9 80.2 82.9 NER in secondary education (%).6 79.0 43.4 78.4 92.8 95. Female.9 79.Net Enrolment Ratios by gender Region South Asia (specific data for India & Pakistan not available) Sub Saharan Africa Latin America & Caribbean East Asia & Pacific World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa NER in primary education (%).2 63.7 91.9 79.1 59.6 88.7 Access to quality education: for the good of all Commonwealth 54 16 CCEM 2006 .9 95.2 19. 2002/2003 93.3 58.5 54.5 91.7 95.

1 39..2 .. 7. . ... 5...9 15.......3 1.4 .... ....2 . .1 . 9. HIV prevalence and primary education Public expenditure HIV prevalence Survival rate to on education as % rate (%) in adults last grade of of gov (ages 15-49).9 . 11....7 12.7 . . 12. 0. .3 . 71 .. 6.1 2.. .. .2 44. .... 12...2 30.. 0..7 ...5 . 8...5 0. 15. ...1 0.... .... 17..... ... .... .. .. . 2001/2 . . 22. 3 ...... .3 ....... Total..4 28. 59 13. . 38.5 .2 18. 4..3 6..5 68. .... 21... ....3 ....8 73.9 63..9 ..2 ....9 57. primary educ (%).. ..2 . .3 17.5 1.6 . .9 28. 8...1 65.9 . .5 . ..9 17.6 42.5 56.8 0.... .. 3..1 .2 61.9 67.9 ... 2002 200346 Female. 20. 16. .1 . ..1 .....9 18.. 12. .1 6... 7..4 80..5 0.1 .7 0... 13...8 18.. expenditure.5 61.4 3..Expenditure...9 1.. 14. .... .9 .7 0... 9.8 54.1 <0.2 .4 2.. .5 21.. .5 Country Antigua and Barbuda Cyprus Kiribati Maldives Sierra Leone Solomon Islands Saint Lucia Tuvalu Australia Singapore Namibia Bahamas Nigeria United Kingdom Canada Grenada Tonga New Zealand Barbados Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Kenya Nauru Pakistan Saint Kitts and Nevis Gambia Brunei Darussalam Jamaica Malawi Uganda Papua New Guinea Mozambique Swaziland South Africa Cameroon Bangladesh Trinidad and Tobago Zambia India Ghana Lesotho Guyana Vanuatu United Republic of Tanzania Belize Access to quality education: for the good of all 55 16 CCEM 2006 ...3 18.

.1 95... <0..9 ...... 93. .. ... ...2 90.3 . 92 .7 89 99.... . 43..5 . 68. Female.. 74....5 . 20.1 97. 0...5 85. 31.... .5 17. 9. World & Regional Transition to Survival rate to last Dropouts all grades. ..4 98.. 61.5 15. .4 . 57. . .3 ...4 98. 42.. 59 63..8 ........... 29... .4 . 99....5 .... .. .. ...4 . . . ...4 37.6 19..... 38... .... 19. .... (%).. . 80.... 77.9 98.. 41 36. 29 .....4 .Dominica Malaysia Botswana Fiji Seychelles Sri Lanka Mauritius Malta .5 Gender: Survival and attrition rates: Commonwealth. Female. 77..... 96.8 .....7 .1 .4 97. .3 25..2 ... 90. ....6 .6 . .. 0.....2 82...5 .1 99.5 .. . 2001/2 2001/2002 . 73.. . ..6 57.5 ...5 84...6 .1 .9 99. . Country Canada Malta United Kingdom Australia Fiji East Asia Pacific Latin America & Carribean South Asia Kiribati Nauru New Zealand Papua New Guinea Solomon Islands Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu Cyprus Antigua and Barbuda Bahamas Barbados Belize Dominica Grenada Guyana Jamaica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago Brunei Darussalam Bangladesh India Malaysia Maldives Access to quality education: for the good of all 56 16 CCEM 2006 ... secondary education grade of primary educ Female. ..6 . 2001/2002 (%).. 0...8 .9 88..9 .. 13.. .. ...3 0.8 84.1 ..5 82. 71 .... .

97.4 85. .9 1.9 61.6 92..3 ... 43.8 30.1 . 66..3 90.9 .9 .9 ....... 98. 1.7 93.4 82.6 ...2 98.7 .9 92 92.2 .6 ...6 89 46 Sub Saharan Africa Malawi Mauritius Mozambique Namibia Nigeria Seychelles Sierra Leone South Africa Swaziland Uganda United Republic of Tanzania Zambia World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa Access to quality education: for the good of all 57 16 CCEM 2006 .7 45...2 .1 .8 85.5 .9 55.9 73..1 . ..9 99. 2.Pakistan Singapore Sri Lanka Botswana Cameroon Gambia Ghana Kenya Lesotho . 67. 19.8 60....2 69.. 97.1 98...9 55.8 42.......5 99.9 62. .. 98.4 98 95..1 14.. 65.. 33. 34. 2.4 58..... 97. 32..3 54.9 99.2 57..1 44.7 94. 93 79.. 68.. . 80.1 37..5 .7 .2 39.3 6... 56..1 17.6 2 4. ..4 79.6 44.5 70.4 . .1 26.7 .4 .1 .4 66..1 ... 99.7 23.9 85.3 76....3 25..1 0.

.. 99. 99.....1 .6 Access to quality education: for the good of all Sub Saharan Africa South Asia Latin America & Caribbean East Asia & Pacific 58 16 CCEM 2006 . . ........ 4542 .9 ..Education Finance Commonwealth Country Canada Malta United Kingdom Australia Fiji Kiribati Nauru New Zealand Papua New Guinea Solomon Islands Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu Cyprus Antigua and Barbuda Bahamas Barbados Belize Dominica Grenada Guyana Jamaica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago Brunei Darussalam Bangladesh India Malaysia Maldives Pakistan Singapore Sri Lanka Botswana Cameroon Gambia Ghana Kenya Lesotho Malawi Mauritius Public current exp per primary pupil in constant 2002 US$ (PPP) .6 .1 96. ..8 99.. . 84 87.. .1 92. Total... 345 . 4062 . 2002/2003 99.7 73 ....4 100 99..... 78... ...8 . 94...4 90 90. ...9 ... 96.... 807 .. . 114 321 1119 . 80. 86.. .3 84. . 705 884 547 966 ...2 94.... . 2709 .5 93. ..8 59 66.. ..6 100 99. 3173 936 .1 ..2 81. 472 ...... 426 66 1039 NER in primary education (%)...5 85...8 .2 99...4 59.... 1070 1270 .6 96 100 96.

...1 794 5399 96. 4193 NER in primary education (%).6 83.. Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe .. 89 75. Sub-Saharan Africa ..5 63.. ...3 78.3 82.. 1281 .5 Region World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries . 77. 55. .. 2002/2003 84. Access to quality education: for the good of all 59 16 CCEM 2006 .. per primary pupil in constant 2002 US$ (PPP).1 95.6 89..4 68.. 1227 515 .2 99. .3 .. Total.4 95......9 92.6 . 2002 ....Mozambique Namibia Nigeria Seychelles Sierra Leone South Africa Swaziland Uganda United Republic of Tanzania Zambia .2 82.6 1705 89 89.. South and West Asia . ... Arab States ..3 67..... .....4 Expenditure and NER Public current exp.

... . Total. ... primary... 100 78 41 30 31 60 .... 95 78 41 60 68 53 80 56 77 73 83 .......... ratio..... 28 22 ...... . 21 Commonwealth Country Pupil/teacher ratio. 39 61 .... 13 22 .. 18 10 20 . 100 .... secondary. .... 20 .. 22 25 29 19 .... . . 97 ... 29 . . 02/200333 2002/200333 .. 17 . 100 . 100 .....Teachers % Trained teachers.. 18 35 . .... 17 16 21 19 19 26 30 17 22 18 19 13 56 41 19 20 40 ... 85 .. . . ..... 58 .. .. ........ 64 ... ... .. 67 .... 2002/2003 17 18 17 ..... 100 . .. primary....20 Total.. . .. . . . 15 15 23 17 20 20 20 10 16 22 19 11 34 33 18 15 .. secondary.... 2002/2003 .. 82 .. . 15 25 27 12 ...... 89 68 % Trained Pupil/teacher teachers.... .. 53 81 . 23 27 57 Canada Malta United Kingdom Australia Fiji East Asia & Pacific Latin America & Caribbean South Asia Kiribati Nauru New Zealand Papua New Guinea Solomon Islands Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu Cyprus Antigua and Barbuda Bahamas Barbados Belize Dominica Grenada Guyana Jamaica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago Brunei Darussalam Bangladesh India Malaysia Maldives Pakistan Singapore Sri Lanka Sub Sah aran Afric a Botswana Cameroon Access to quality education: for the good of all 60 16 CCEM 2006 .

57 ...Gambia Ghana Kenya Lesotho Malawi Mauritius Mozambique Namibia Nigeria Seychelles Sierra Leone South Africa Swaziland Uganda United Republic of Tanzania Zambia 73 68 44 73 51 100 60 50 76 77 79 81 91 81 100 100 38 32 34 47 62 25 67 28 42 13 37 35 31 53 56 43 88 74 ... 84 .... . ... . . 36 Access to quality education: for the good of all 61 16 CCEM 2006 .. ... 25 19 26 23 46 19 27 24 35 14 27 29 16 . . 89 83 ...........

7 23.5 37.. primary education.6 18 % private enrolment in secondary education......4 73.1 61. 2.1 1.1 41. 13.2 .4 . .. 11... 100 41. .2 6.1 6.6 66.9 1.1 4. 27.4 . . .. .7 28.1 4. 48.7 1 1..8 32 59.5 10..8 14. .6 3.3 24..9 5.2 30.8 39.5 100 100 58.9 33.3 75. .4 Canada Malta United Kingdom Australia Fiji Kiribati Nauru New Zealand Papua New Guinea Solomon Islands Tonga Tuvalu Vanuatu Cyprus Antigua and Barbuda Bahamas Barbados Belize Dominica Grenada Guyana Jamaica Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Trinidad and Tobago Brunei Darussalam Bangladesh India Malaysia Maldives Pakistan Singapore Sri Lanka Botswana Cameroon Gambia Ghana Sub Saharan Africa Access to quality education: for the good of all South Asia Latin America & Caribbean East Asia & Pacific 62 16 CCEM 2006 ..1 28.9 .2 96.1 . ..9 3.. 24. 2002/2003 2002/2003 7.... 62.2 17 0. 79.7 89...3 0.2 ..9 28 ..9 58..5 41.6 3.9 4..5 2.6 0..... 2 4.3 40.1 100 .9 24.. 100 65..4 ..2 4....8 38...5 34.9 11..6 11 87.5 19.... 4. .9 .5 20..6 29.. 2 4.8 25.5 .Private education enrolment Country % private % private enrolment in preenrolment in primary education...5 11. 2002/2003 6. ..2 28 11.4 27..8 ...3 1. .1 .6 1 . 9. 3.1 100 36...8 5..9 . ...

5 2...7 9.6 86.. 100 44 4. .4 1.. 2002/2003 2002/2003 2002/2003 40.8 Country % private enrolment % private enrolment % private enrolment in secondary in pre-primary in primary education.8 3..1 9.8 58. 1.2 .. 73..3 0.4 4.Kenya Lesotho Malawi Mauritius Mozambique Namibia Nigeria Seychelles Sierra Leone South Africa Swaziland Uganda United Republic of Tanzania Zambia 10 100 .. 0.5 6.2 4.4 7 15..4 1.3 9.5 1.2 4.1 .2 10.7 7.8 .8 4..3 59.2 .6 0..8 9 24. 81..5 33 61.9 10.7 World Countries in transition Developed countries Developing countries Arab States Central and Eastern Europe Central Asia East Asia and the Pacific Latin America and the Caribbean North America and Western Europe South and West Asia Sub-Saharan Africa Access to quality education: for the good of all 63 16 CCEM 2006 .4 25.4 .7 3..8 12.9 12.3 7.. 0.3 .6 .6 58.1 0..5 24.9 1.4 1 7... . 2. education...6 41.1 0. education.8 15.9 7. 24.6 13 0.9 2.3 8 11.5 .1 1.. 99.9 0.2 2...4 20.

4 83.2 Non-Commonwealth mean adult literacy East Asia & Pacific Latin America & Caribbean Sub Saharan Africa adult literacy male literacy Female (%) (%) literacy (%) 87.9 85. unless otherwise stated Access to quality education: for the good of all 64 16 CCEM 2006 .1 70.7 80.3 52.8 88.8 62.8 85.3 67.4 91.9 43.1 * All data has been sourced from the UNESCO Institute for Statistics.1 91.2 87.6 74.1 89.6 80.3 75.Adult literacy Commonwealth mean adult literacy East Asia & Pacific Latin America & Caribbean South Asia Sub Saharan Africa adult literacy male literacy Female (%) (%) literacy (%) 80.6 65.4 90.

2002 as the difference in % of total government expenditure 65 16 CCEM 2006 .Lesotho Saint Kitts and Nevis Mauritius South Africa Tonga Pakistan Brunei Darussalam Bangladesh Nauru Guyana Papua New Guinea United Kingdom India Trinidad and Tobago Belize Barbados Fiji Malaysia Cameroon Vanuatu Saint Vincent and the Grenadines -10 10 15 -5 0 5 Access to quality education: for the good of all Commonwealth Education Finance Budgetary change from 1998 .

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