News and Research 29

School Autonomy, Accountability and Assessment

More than 124 million children in developing countries are not in school. More than 250 million children are in school but cannot read. More than 50 percent of students in middle income country could be categorized as functionally illiterate. What is the problem? The failure in the “service delivery chain” has been cited. This includes inequitable allocation to low-income groups, the “leakage” of funding from central ministries to front-line providers, and the failure of providers such as teachers to perform effectively—or even, in many cases, to show up. One approach to solving this problem is to improve school accountability…

Service delivery: Education and health Spotlight in 2017 WDR: Improving access to health services and ensuring that students learn are essential to expanding opportunities for all citizens. Various market failures explain the need for collective action to deliver these services. However, power asymmetries often prevent the successful implementation of policies that improve health and education.

Who are the winners and losers of the expansion of education over the past 50 years?  Modern education systems, which are open to the middle classes and the poor, not just the elites, were established during the first industrial revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries…

The Future of Work in The Developing World The twin forces of technological change and globalization are reshaping the global economy in multiple and important ways. Nowhere are their effects more pronounced than in labor markets. Considerable attention is now being devoted to analyzing and anticipating changing patterns of employment and wages in advanced economies. Thus far, less focus has been given to understanding the implications for emerging economies. The 2016 Brookings Blum Roundtable was convened to take on that agenda. How are the factors driving change in global labor markets playing out differently…

Rihanna Promotes Education at School in Malawi  It seems to have been all work, work, work, work, work, for Barbados’ pop princess Rihanna of late, but she is doing great work and all for a good cause…

Emerging markets should welcome low-cost private schools  More than 250m children in developing countries are not in school. Those who do attend often fail to learn anything. According to one study of seven African countries, primary-school pupils receive less than two-and-a-half hours of teaching each day; teachers are absent from class about half of the time. Even when they show up, theirs is a Potemkin pedagogy, lecturing to nonplussed pupils. Only about a quarter of secondary-school pupils in poor countries would reach the basic level of attainment on standardised international tests…

What makes good schools? The case of China and LAC  How can we explain China’s educational advantage over Latin America? In several educational indicators, China shares a lot of similarities with Latin American countries…

How Singapore Readies its Students for a Globalized World  As the world becomes increasingly globalized and interconnected, it’s becoming more important for students to learn skills that help them to interact across cultures and thrive in a global economy. To this end, “global competence” is a field of education that has been gaining momentum in schools around the world over the last 15 years. The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) — a study that tests scholastic performance by 15-year-old students around the world — has even recognized it, and will include global competence assessment in its next round of testing in 2018…

Colleges and inequality | Skipping class  New data show that joining the 1% remains unsettlingly hereditary…

A fintech startup tries to shake up American student loans  In an old factory building in lower Manhattan a fintech startup is seeking answers to a question that has tormented teachers and students for decades: what is the value of a given course, teacher or institution? Climb Credit, with just two dozen employees, provides student loans…

Education in China: A Snapshot  In 2015, three economies in China participated in the OECD Programme for International Student Assessment, or PISA, for the first time: Beijing, a municipality, Jiangsu, a province on the eastern coast of the country, and Guangdong, a southern coastal province. Shanghai, which, like Beijing, is also a Chinese megacity of over 20 million people…

What is desirable bilingual education in developing countries? Many developing countries are populated by multiple ethnic groups who use their own language in daily life and in local business, but have to use a common language in national business and in communications with other groups. In these countries, how much…

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