Category Archives: Education

Columbia University

It was a performance art piece that became famous: A woman who felt that Columbia University had mishandled her charge of rape against a fellow student turned that anger into her senior arts thesis, a yearlong project in which she carried a 50-pound mattress whenever she was on the Morningside Heights campus.

The woman, Emma Sulkowicz, won national acclaim and was largely embraced by her fellow students, who often helped her carry her burden, which she even brought to a graduation ceremony in May 2015.

The accused man, Paul Nungesser, who was cleared of responsibility in the case by a university disciplinary panel, found himself alternately hounded and ostracized, and condemned at a campus rally and on fliers posted around campus. A month before he and Ms. Sulkowicz received their degrees, he sued Columbia, accusing it of supporting what he called an “outrageous display of harassment and defamation” by giving Ms. Sulkowicz academic credit for her project.

Columbia said late this week that it had reached a settlement with Mr. Nungesser, the terms of which it did not disclose. But the university said in a statement: “Columbia recognizes that after the conclusion of the investigation, Paul’s remaining time at Columbia became very difficult for him and not what Columbia would want any of its students to experience. Columbia will continue to review and update its policies toward ensuring that every student — accuser and accused, including those like Paul who are found not responsible — is treated respectfully and as a full member of the Columbia community.”

Wm. Theodore de Bary, a venerable Columbia University educator and distinguished scholar of China who was credited with broadening the way colleges nationwide study Asia, died on Friday at his home in Tappan, N.Y. He was 97.

His death was announced by Robert Hornsby, a spokesman for the university.

Professor de Bary was an internationally esteemed Sinologist with a shelf of at least 30 books to his credit, either written or edited by him, and a bevy of academic awards and honors, including the National Humanities Medal, presented by President Barack Obama.

More locally, on the university campus in Morningside Heights in Manhattan, he was the consummate Columbia man — “one of the towering figures of modern Columbia history,” as Columbia College Today declared in 2013, a courtly figure “with the bow-tied elegance and comportment of a seasoned ambassador.”

As an editor, Professor de Bary presented thinkers from various Asian cultures in their own words in dozens of books that became standards in the field, elevating Asian studies far beyond Columbia to a prominence once reserved for European scholarship. In 1987, The New York Times reported that his “Sources of Chinese Tradition” had been the fourth-best-selling nonfiction book in universities over the last 25 years.

 His particular focus was in explicating the thoughts of the great Chinese sage Confucius as they were interpreted over the centuries. The Journal of Chinese Religions in 1987 praised his explorations of how the Confucian belief system became “a major component of the moral and spiritual fiber of the peoples of East Asia.”

Professor de Bary offered detailed evidence that Confucian thought, as reinterpreted in 17th-century China, had a radical core that justified revolutionary action. It was a view diametrically opposed to that of China’s most consequential revolutionary, Mao Zedong, who saw Confucius as the consummate reactionary.

In a 1988 lecture at the University of California, Berkeley, Professor de Bary wryly noted that Mao, after decades of censoring any mention of Confucius, had to revive the philosopher’s memory in the 1960s in order to revile him.

Undocumented Students

For undocumented students, close relationships with teachers and guidance counselors can make a world of difference, says education and immigration expert Roberto Gonzales. Educators can not only provide much-needed emotional support; they can also be the resource these students and their families need to stay safe and participate fully in their communities.

If a student discloses his or her status and asks for advice, you don’t have to have all the answers right away, says Gonzales, who spent 12 years chronicling the experiences of undocumented young people for his book Lives in Limbo. More important is acknowledging the student’s concerns and telling the student that you’ll figure it out together — and then talk to colleagues, visit local community centers, or find answers online. Tell the student, “I can find ways to better help you.”

SUPPORTING UNDOCUMENTED LEARNERS IN MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOL

Help families and children understand their rights. Schools are legally forbidden from asking about immigration status, and some students may not disclose (or may not know) their status. Districts and schools with immigrant populations should communicate proactively with all families, with messages of inclusion and to encourage DACA enrollment and renewal, as modeled by this resource from the Boston Public Schools and by a new BPS website called We Dream Together, designed for students. From early on, they should spread the message to students that everyone can aspire to go to college and pursue interests and career goals. That message should include the fact that undocumented students can legally attend college in the U.S.

 

Create a strong mentoring system. Gonzales identified a single characteristic shared by each of the high-achieving undocumented students he followed: “To the person, they could name three or four adult mentors in their lives,” he says. “These were teachers, counselors, adults within the school community who really helped forge a pathway for them.”

Look to colleges as a model for student services. At the postsecondary level, some colleges have taken the lead by creating resource centers for undocumented students, and these have been effective at providing the specific support these students need, Gonzales says. These resource centers include an identified staff person who acts as a liaison to students in navigating the bureaucracy of higher education. They also provide trainings for staff and faculty, and they convene support groups and clubs for undocumented students.

Stay aware of the challenges of adolescence. Navigating adolescence is challenging for all children, but it’s uniquely so for undocumented children, who may contend with stigma, exclusion, or self-seclusion or secrecy that families often feel compelled to impose. With DACA, “there are more supports to prevent kids from falling off,” Gonzales says. “There are new opportunities for guidance, allowing these young people and their families some breathing room — some chance to maintain their aspirations.”

Catholic Education

the task of Catholic educators today, those who have been called to this ‘guidance of souls’, is different to that of their predecessors. We live now in a world where the Spirit is inviting us to a much greater openness in our religious education. The challenge today is not to offer the present set of learners that – in many ways very attractive – set of coherent and confidence-inducing beliefs that their direct ancestors received, but something different: it is to offer to them the possibility of an encounter with Jesus Christ.

Now it needs to be said right away that you cannot possibly make this encounter happen, all you can do is create the conditions of possibility; and a Catholic school is a very good place to do it, for the question about Jesus, and the ancient faith of Catholicism that frames that question, is part of the wallpaper. But today’s learners are very different to those of the 1950s and 1960s. I hazard the guess that most children in Catholic schools do not go to church on Sunday of their own accord, that their parents are not always practising in that narrow sense of being at Mass on Sunday; but that today’s students are nevertheless remarkably more open to religious faith, to Christianity, and even to the Catholic expression of that faith than such people were even ten years ago. That is my impression from the youngsters with whom I am dealing. I hazard the further guess that modern learners know almost nothing of this Catholic faith, even though they are quite open to it.

Thousands of Catholic schools have closed, most in low-income urban neighborhoods. Many of the remaining schools struggle with maintaining enrollment, attracting and retaining top-tier educators, and making financial ends meet. Because these challenges are the result of long-term shifts in city demographics, societal conditions, and urban K‒12 public policies, it would seem that there is little that Catholic-school leaders can do to stem the tide. The forecast has been bleak.

But over the last decade or so, some corners of Catholic education—a field long wedded to traditional ways—have embraced a series of innovative reforms. New approaches to instruction, governance, and technology, combined with the utilization of burgeoning public-voucher and tax-credit programs, are helping to revitalize the sector. Although much remains true to form, Catholic primary and secondary schooling is also exhibiting more entrepreneurialism and energy than it has in decades while at the same time preserving its commitment to the religious formation of boys and girls.

This unexpected blend of old and new is at the heart of what may become the renaissance of Catholic K‒12 education in America.

A Half-Century Losing Streak

For decades now, top scholars, including James Coleman and Anthony Bryk, have described what is sometimes called the “Catholic-school effect.” These schools appear to have an unusual ability to close achievement gaps and enable disadvantaged students to reach higher levels of accomplishment. Although the research is mixed on Catholic schools’ influence on test scores, their students are more likely to graduate from high school, attend college, earn higher wages, and engage in pro-social behaviors like voting and volunteerism. This is especially true for low-income and minority students (see “Schools of Choice,” features, Spring 2016).

Studies have suggested that this is at least partly attributable to the ability of Catholic K‒12 to create a particular (and positive) school culture. The hypothesis has been that Catholic schools’ nurturing but no-excuses environment emanates from their educators’ shared belief that they have a moral duty to help every single child. This in turn shapes the behavior of and relationships among teachers, administrators, students, and families. This could be the reason why recent research by Margaret F. Brinig and Nicole Stelle Garnett finds that urban Catholic schools may positively influence social capital in the neighborhoods in which they are located.

But despite such success, Catholic K‒12 has been on a half-century losing streak. At its mid-1960s peak, the sector educated 5.6 million students in approximately 13,000 schools nationwide. (By way of comparison, in 2013‒14 the entire state of California had about 10,000 public schools.) Today, fewer than 2 million students attend just 6,500 Catholic schools in this country. The closures have hit urban neighborhoods the hardest: Since 2005 alone, nearly one-quarter of the elementary schools located in the nation’s 12 largest urban dioceses have closed.

Many factors have contributed to this steep decline: in the 1960s and 1970s, white middle-class families fled to the suburbs, taking with them tuition dollars and tithes and leaving behind poorer, primarily non-Catholic populations. The dramatic expansion of charter schools in urban areas has provided families with tuition-free alternatives to district schools, making it difficult for tuition-dependent Catholic schools to compete. The nation as a whole has become increasingly secular and less anti-Catholic, meaning fewer families feel compelled to place their kids in a Catholic educational setting. Tragic scandals have also rocked the Catholic Church, creating distrust among families and financial burdens for parishes and dioceses. Fewer individuals are choosing religious vocations, causing schools to hire more expensive lay staff.

When put together, these changes have made the traditional Catholic-school model financially unsustainable. Some would even say the combined influence of these factors is so overwhelming that a Catholic-schools comeback is now in the realm of miracles.

But it’s also the case that when Catholic-school advocates tally the forces that have conspired against them, they ought to put a mirror at the end of the list. Often resting on their laurels and obstinately seeing constancy as virtue, this sector has been change-resistant to a fault. Even public policy—notoriously glacial—responded to the decades of urban-district failure by creating chartering, recovery school districts, mayoral takeovers, and much more.

But the Church proved more ossified: the organization, management, staffing, funding, and governance of urban Catholic schools was nearly identical when Catholic schools took off in the 1890s, ascended in the early 20th century, and collapsed in the century’s second half. Even on a seemingly tactical matter—becoming more welcoming to America’s exploding Hispanic population—Catholic schools made too little progress for too long. Today, while Hispanics make up 40 percent of all U.S. Catholics, only 3 percent of school-age Hispanic children are enrolled in Catholic schools.

It is telling that the 1990s and 2000s saw a proliferation of civil-society activity associated more with urban public education than with urban private education. A vast array of nonprofit organizations came of age to support public school innovation: Teach For America, TNTP, dozens of high-performing charter school networks, new-school incubators, advocacy organizations, and much more. Somehow, a wave of social entrepreneurs actually saw the typically sclerotic public sector as a more promising partner than the ostensibly unencumbered, nimble Catholic schools sector. In hindsight, this stands out as a glaring unforced error by Catholic education.

It must be said, however, that many individuals and organizations dutifully supported Catholic schools in their hours of need. Philanthropists, in particular, gave generously to save countless schools from closure and provide low-income students access to otherwise unattainable schools. But it is also notable that much of this effort took for granted most of the old Catholic-school apparatus. For example, scholarship programs enabled disadvantaged kids to attend extant, financially struggling schools; new educator-preparation programs sent fresh teachers into the unchanging, aging system.

What is most noticeable and most different about the promising efforts of the last decade is that Catholic-education reformers are now taking a different tack. Like many of the most encouraging public-school reforms, these efforts have been organic and highly decentralized. There’s not been a national Catholic-schools strategic plan or even grand, sophisticated initiatives emanating from diocesan central offices. Instead, individual church and school leaders, local philanthropists, and a range of social entrepreneurs have developed and grown innovative and (by Catholic-school standards) radical approaches.

This generation of reformers has no interest in secularizing Catholic education. Lourdes Academy, a Notre Dame ACE Academy, provides a high-quality Catholic education infused with gospel truths within a safe, supportive, and challenging learning envi)

This generation of Catholic-school reformers is absolutely loyal to authentic Catholic education; they have no interest in secularizing it. But they have shown an enviable openness to altering nonessential practices. They are fully committed to ensuring a brighter future for Catholic education, but these are by no means your father’s, grandfather’s, or great-grandfather’s Catholic schools.

The divide between academic and technical education

The economic arguments for widening access to higher education are widely accepted. The UK is moving towards a skills crisis that will be exacerbated by Brexit. We are facing some of the worst productivity levels in the OECD, and we have acute shortages in many sectors, with a record number of advertised vacancies. The UK’s engineering industry alone will need another 1.8 million trained individuals by 2025. But we will only be able to plug these gaps if we focus on all learners, and not just those on academic courses.

The Social Mobility Commission’s most recent report notes that the funding and expertise ploughed into widening participation have resulted in more working class young people at university than ever before. But that comes with the large caveat that both student retention rates and graduate outcomes for the same group have scarcely improved in the last two decades.

What is less recognised is that many widening participation strategies are inadequate because they put too much emphasis on academic pathways and thus ignore the majority of learners. This year around 43% of young people will enter higher education having studied A-Levels or BTECs. While access issues remain for many disadvantaged students, those on an academic route benefit from a clear, simple pathway to level 4 (equivalent to an HNC) on to level 6 (Bachelors’ degree) and above. The same cannot be said for the rest of the school population.

Universities’ widening participation strategies have rarely accounted for those in further and vocational study. Faced with a complicated and fragmented system, only 2.4% of these learners navigate through FE colleges to higher education study at Level 4 or above, and consequently face careers which often have little chance of meaningful progression. The social impact of this failure is feeding into an ever more divided society, as indicated by the fault lines shown up in the recent general election and last year’s Brexit referendum.

My institution, London South Bank University, was founded 125 years ago to “promote industrial skill, general knowledge, health and wellbeing to young men and women belonging to the poorer classes of south east London”. We are now pioneering a bold new solution to local educational provision which could help meet this challenge. Through a series of mergers, we are creating a family of educational providers: a group of like-minded specialist educational providers sharing a common approach to educational delivery and linked through a formal group structure. Currently in addition to the university, this includes a technical college and an engineering academy. A tie-up with Lambeth College is also under discussion.

The family of educational providers seeks to address this in two ways – firstly by providing access back into education both through adult education courses and through an Institute of Professional and Technical Education which helps employers to upskill their staff. Secondly, it puts aside arbitrary age-based barriers, allowing students to learn what they need when they need it.

For example, if a student was particularly gifted at subjects such as design and computer science but struggled at maths, they probably wouldn’t fulfil their potential because they would be unable to get into a FE college or sixth form if they failed their maths GCSE at 16. In a learning family with shared educational objectives this learner could start their A-Levels while continuing to study for their maths GCSE, allowing them to take the exam when they were ready. If they made good progress they could even move on to taking foundation degree modules at the university.

The family approach represents LSBU’s response to the needs of our corner of south-east London. It is not prescriptive and will not be suitable for every local area. However, I would encourage all educational providers to engage critically with the ideas in our new paper Families of Learning: Co-Creating Local Solutions to Education System Failings [pdf]. Together we can explore whether they present opportunities to meaningfully widen participation, tackle the skills shortages and boost genuine social mobility.

Based Education

State and federal policymakers are increasingly talking about “competency-based learning” as the way of the future. In a competency-based system, students advance upon mastery. This model marks a sharp departure from the school system’s traditional metric:  hours spent in the classroom studying a specific subject.

At the turn of the 20th century, in an effort to standardize high school curricula and college admissions, a committee at the National Education Association determined that a satisfactory year’s work in a given high-school subject would require no fewer than 120 one-hour instructional periods. In 1909, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching codified this standard as the Carnegie unit, or credit unit. Since then, the education system has measured student progress in terms of instructional hours, not student learning. So long as a student logs the necessary hours and receives a passing grade, he can move on to the next course, regardless of gaps in his understanding. And a passing grade may be based in part on non-academic factors like attendance, extra credit, and good behavior, rather than demonstration of mastery.

Today, the Carnegie unit is showing its age, as more educators recognize that the time-based measure leaves students susceptible to moving on to material before they are ready, or remaining mired in a subject that they have already mastered. In addition to introducing flexible pacing, competency-based education attempts to import newfound rigor to the concept of “mastery.” In this new system, “competencies” describe what students should know,as well as what they should be able to do. Competency-based assessments aim to test students’ ability to demonstrate what they can do in real-world applications and across a variety of contexts.

Policies that allow institutions to measure student progress in terms of mastery rather than credit hours are beginning to take hold in K–12 and higher education. The U.S. Department of Education recently committed a wave of Experimental Sites Initiative funding to supporting competency-based approaches in postsecondary education, and more than 300 institutions are lining up to be among the approved experimenters. In K–12 education, states are following suit: 42 states have granted schools the flexibility to incorporate competency approaches in some form or fashion. Among states promoting K–12 efforts, New Hampshire has been a trailblazer.

In 2005, New Hampshire began to build a competency-based education policy and has eliminated the Carnegie unit in its high schools. As the first effort of its kind, New Hampshire’s example demonstrates both the power and limitations of statewide competency-based education policy.

The state’s move has enabled many innovative schools to transform the schooling experience for students. But spreading competency-based practice has also proven challenging in a state with a strong tradition of local control. One superintendent captured the wider sentiment when he said in an interview last year, “Frankly, a lot of superintendents don’t like the state telling them what to do in their districts.”

The state has struggled to balance a culture of autonomy with furnishing school districts with supports and guidance to move away from time-based practices. “The state is supportive in theory,” a New Hampshire school leader said. “They like the idea of competencies. I don’t think they’ve really thought through what has to happen for those things to be viable.” The challenge of providing meaningful supports is made more acute by the fact that the field at large is still attempting to research and understand exactly what is required—logistically, pedagogically, and culturally—to transition to a fully competency-based system. As a result, the state has found itself tasked not only with providing what districts say they need, but also with identifying still-emerging best practices in how to transition from time- to competency-based systems and structures.

Today, some New Hampshire school systems have embraced the flexibility that the state policy offers, whereas others remain tied to time-based practices. To support those early adopters and move those that are further behind, the state continues to develop and hone the guidance and infrastructure that can ease the transition. New Hampshire’s experience offers valuable lessons in what policies and practices stand to loosen the stronghold of the Carnegie unit on the nation’s approach to education.

 

Campus Rape Policies

WASHINGTON — The letters have come in to her office by the hundreds, heartfelt missives from college students, mostly men, who had been accused of rape or sexual assault. Some had lost scholarships. Some had been expelled. A mother stumbled upon her son trying to take his own life, recalled Candice E. Jackson, the top civil rights official at the Department of Education.

“Listening to her talk about walking in and finding him in the middle of trying to kill himself because his life and his future were gone, and he was forever branded a rapist — that’s haunting,” said Ms. Jackson, describing a meeting with the mother of a young man who had been accused of sexual assault three months after his first sexual encounter.

The young man, who maintained he was innocent, had hoped to become a doctor.

In recent years, on campus after campus, from the University of Virginia to Columbia University, from Duke to Stanford, higher education has been roiled by high-profile cases of sexual assault accusations. Now Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is stepping into that maelstrom. On Thursday, she will meet in private with women who say they were assaulted, accused students and their families, advocates for both sides and higher education officials, the first step in a contentious effort to re-examine policies of President Barack Obama, who made expansive use of his powers to investigate the way universities and colleges handle sexual violence.

How university and college administrations have dealt with campus sexual misconduct charges has become one of the most volatile issues in higher education, with many women saying higher education leaders have not taken their trauma seriously. But the Obama administration’s response sparked a backlash, not just from the accused and their families but from well-regarded law school professors who say new rules went too far.

In an interview previewing her plans, Ms. Jackson, who heads the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights and organized Thursday’s sessions, made clear that she believes investigations under the 1972 law known as Title IX have gone deeply awry. A sexual assault survivor herself, she said she sees “a red flag that something’s not quite right” — and that the rights of accused students have too often been ignored

Hundreds of cases are still pending, some for years, she said, because investigators were “specifically told to keep looking until you find the violation” on college campuses even after they found none — a charge her critics strongly deny.

As of Monday, the office had 496 open sexual assault cases, and the average length of a case is 703 days, according to the department. The longest pending higher education cases, against the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and Arizona State University, have been open for more than five years. The office is required to complete 80 percent of its investigations within 180 days.

Candice Jackson, center, the top civil rights official at the Department of Education, in October 2016. Ms. Jackson believes that the rights of students accused of sexual assault have too often been ignored. Credit Evan Vucci/Associated Press

In an interview with The New York Times, Ms. Jackson said that “90 percent” of sexual assault accusations on campus “fall into the category of ‘we were both drunk,’ ‘we broke up, and six months later I found myself under a Title IX investigation because she just decided that our last sleeping together was not quite right.’”

Ms. Jackson later apologized, called her remarks “flippant” and said they were based on feedback from accused students. That did not mollify victims of sexual assault and their supporters, who staged a protest outside the Education Department headquarters Thursday morning.

Candice Jackson, who leads the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights, last year. She recently apologized for comments about the origin of sexual assault at college campuses. Credit Evan Vucci/Associated Press

“Unfortunately those remarks are now out there, and at the highest levels they need to undo that damage by countering those myths about rape,” said Fatima Goss Graves, president of the National Women’s Law Center, which helped organize the demonstration.

Referring to Ms. DeVos, she said: “She has to reject the idea that rape is just regretted sex. She has to reject the idea that most women lie, and she has to say it and say it and say it again.”

One major issue before Ms. DeVos is whether to rescind a letter issued in 2011 by the Obama administration that urged colleges and universities to take a tough stance on rape on campus or risk losing federal funding. Another question is whether her department will instruct schools to change the standard of evidence used to determine whether students are responsible for sexual assault. The Obama administration asked colleges to adopt a “preponderance of evidence” standard, a lower bar than the “clear and convincing evidence” threshold that many schools had been using. Some accused students have protested that the lower standard turned nebulous cases into grounds for discipline or suspension

The University of Law

The University of Law (ULaw) has been awarded a gold ranking in the government-led teaching excellence framework (Tef) – a new scheme managed by the Higher Education Funding Council for England which aims to recognise and reward excellent learning and teaching in addition to existing national quality requirements. Here’s a quick explainer on what Tef is all about. The Tef panel judged that ULaw “delivers consistently outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for its students. It is of the highest quality found in the UK”.

The Tef panel found (pdf) that ULaw has consistently strong and established links to employers and the legal profession; course design and assessment practices that ensure that all students are challenged to achieve their full potential; the provision of many personalised development opportunities for students; and a culture of professional practice and teaching excellence, which is embedded with academic staff continuing involvement in professional practice.

The awards are decided by an independent Tef panel of experts, including academics, students, and employer representatives. The provider’s undergraduate teaching is assessed against 10 criteria which cover teaching quality, learning environment, and student outcomes.

Professor Andrea Nollent, vice-chancellor and chief executive at The University of Law, said:

“Our students are smart and ambitious and rightly demand the highest standard of teaching, so we are delighted to receive the Tef gold standard. The award is testament to our tutors, all of whom are qualified solicitors or barristers, together with our teaching approach, which focuses on equipping our graduates with the skills they need and employers want. This award builds on our success of last year, when we were voted joint-first for student satisfaction, teaching, academic support and learning resources in the National Student Survey 2016.”

ULaw’s courses include a fully-integrated employability service to maximise students’ employment prospects.

Established in 1912, the College of Law at the University of Saskatchewan is the oldest law school in Western Canada, exemplifying a tradition of excellence in teaching, research and innovation.

With a strong history in Indigenous legal education, developing strength in dispute resolution and access to justice, and leading and emerging scholars in the fields of constitutional law, health law, criminal law and commercial law, the college also offers a highly-regarded mooting program, joint degree programs and global exchange opportunities.

*Intellectual Property and Information Law

They frame ways for attorneys to protect client interests in areas as varied as law enforcement, print journalism, pharmaceuticals, fashion design, video syndication, and the arts.

The Concentration offers you a solid substantive grounding in both IP and information law and provides flexibility for you to develop a set of courses that is tailored to your specific interests and career objectives.

*Courses and Faculty

Foundational, core specialty, and elective specialty courses compose the intellectual property and information law Concentration. You are also encouraged to take an experiential course.

For full requirements, current students can log into Lawnet.

For further information please contact the Office of the Registrar or Professor Olivier Sylvain.

Education in Indonesia

Education is one of the key vehicles for the intellectual and professional development of our people and plays an increasingly important role in supporting a stronger and more globally competitive Indonesia. However, education in Indonesia still has several problems related to quality and access as well as the even distribution of well-trained teachers.

Limited access to education in rural areas has contributed to increased urbanization as families relocate to cities in order to acquire better education. According to the Indonesian education activist Anies Baswedan, “the problem is that the number of education facilities in [the] Greater Jakarta area (Jabodetabek) is proportional, but we have a problem in the rural areas and it is causing urbanization to Jakarta.” Baswedan calls for expanded educational access through the provision of increased educational services for communities as a whole. “If the schools are only located in district’s capital, then many people might not be able to achieve proper education,” he said.

Furthermore, the number of qualified teachers is still not evenly distributed in rural areas. According to the Director General of Primary Education at the Ministry of Education and Culture, Muhammad Hamid, many elementary schools (SD) in Indonesia face a serious shortage of teachers. The amount is estimated to reach 112,000 teachers.

To overcome the uneven teacher distribution, the Ministry of Education and Culture will work closely with local governments, both provincial and district / city, to improve teacher allocation in these areas. “If the teacher allocation can be optimally managed, areas that have a surplus of teachers can be transferred to nearby districts,” said Hamid.
In order to increase the number of qualified teachers in schools in Indonesia, the Ministry will offer bachelor degree scholarships for elementary (SD) and secondary school (SMP) teachers. Hamid estimates that only 60% of the 1.85 million elementary school teachers in Indonesia have bachelor degrees. Each year, the ministry also provide 100,000 bachelor degree scholarships for aspiring elementary and secondary school teachers.

Of 120 countries included in the 2012 UNESCO Education For All Global Monitoring Report, which measures education quality, Indonesia is ranked 64th. UNESCO’s 2011 Education Development Index (EDI) ranked Indonesia 69th out of 127 countries.

Additionally, the number of children that have dropped out of school in Indonesia is still high. “Based on the Ministry’s data in 2010, there are more than 1.8 million children each year cannot continue their education. This is caused by three factors, namely economic factors, children who are forced to work to support the family, and marriage at an early age,” according to the Directorate General of Higher Education Secretary Dr. Ir. Patdono Suwignjo, M. Eng, Sc in Jakarta.

Role of Education in Development

Education has the task to transform and prepare the human resource development. The pace of development has always strived step in rhythm with the demands of the times. The times always bring up new issues that have never thought about before. This chapter will examine the underlying problems of education, and serve targeted interplay between the principal, the factors influencing its development and actual problems and ways to overcome them.

What will happen if the development in Indonesia is not accompanied by development in the field of education?. Despite his physical development is good, but what’s the point when the nation’s moral decline. If this happens, the economy would be problematic, because each person will be corruption. So it will eventually come a day when the state and the nation is destroyed. Therefore, for prevention, education must be one of the priorities in the development of the country

Government and Education Problems Solutions

Regarding the issue pedidikan, our government’s attention was still very minimal. This picture is reflected in the diversity of an increasingly complex education issues. The quality of students is still low, teachers are less professional, cost of education, even chaotic Education Act rules. The impact of poor education, the future of our country gets dragged. This downturn may also result from the average size of budget allocations for education at the national, provincial, and city and county.

Solving the problems of education should not be done separately, but must be steps or actions that are thorough. That is, we not only pay attention to increase the budget only. Because it’s useless, if the quality of human resources and quality of education in Indonesia is still low. Problem Nine-year Compulsory Education implementation is still a true great PR for us. The fact that we can see that many in the countryside who do not have adequate educational facilities. With the abandonment of the nine-year compulsory education program resulted in Indonesian children are still many who drop out of school before completing their nine-year compulsory education. Under these conditions, when no significant change in policy, it is difficult for this nation out of the educational problems that exist, let alone survive the competition in the global era.

Ideal conditions in the field of education in Indonesia is every child can go to school at least until the high school level regardless of status because that is their right. But it is very difficult to realize at this time. Therefore, at least everyone has an equal chance of attending any education. If you look at the above problems, there is an inequity between the rich and the poor. As if the school’s only rich people just so that people with low to feel inferior to school and hang out with them. Plus the publication of the school about scholarships is very minimal.

Free Schools in Indonesia should have adequate facilities, competent faculty, the curriculum is appropriate, and has the administrative and bureaucratic system of good and uncomplicated. However, in reality, free schools are schools located in remote areas of slums and everything was not able to support the school bench which raised the question, “Is it true that the school is free? If yes, yes reasonable because it is very alarming.

the UK is still a desirable study destination

A new 2017 study, published by Universities UK International, The UK’s Competitive Advantage, found that international students in the UK have higher levels of satisfaction than their global peers.

The study revealed that 86 percent of international undergraduates in the UK are “very likely” to recommend the UK as a study destination.  This figure is three percentage points higher than results in 2008.

What’s refreshing for the UK?  These numbers are higher than other significant global study destinations like the US, Canada, Australia, Germany, and the Netherlands.

The report also shows that the UK is number one for student satisfaction, with 91 percent of international students reporting that they are “satisfied.”

The drop in numbers of international students studying in the UK is a worry to universities.

“International recruitment figures in the UK over the last few years have not done justice either to the global success of the UK’s universities, or the sector’s ability to tap into this substantial growth market,” says Nicola Dandridge, chief executive of Universities UK. “At the same time, competitor countries have seen rises in international student numbers.”

When aggressive statements on immigration are made by British politicians and a few days later hit newspapers in India, Pakistan or Malaysia, it’s hardly surprising that as a prospective student you may decide to spend three years and a shedload of your cash somewhere a bit friendlier.

Dandridge says: “The quality of our universities must be matched by the quality of welcome we provide to students.”

Fees are a big worry for many international students, says a British Council survey. High costs and poor exchange rates may be a reason why more international students are doing UK university courses outside the UK now than inside, studying either on satellite campuses or via distance learning – or a combination of the two.

If you’re a student deciding where to do your degree, you have more choice than ever on where to study. David Smith, from Simon-Kucher & Partners, thinks this could lead to UK universities setting different prices for different courses, to better reflect the value of the course you’re applying for.

Worries about getting a job after graduation are particularly hard for international students whose families have made enormous financial sacrifices so they can study overseas.

“A lot of Indian students get a loan through their parents, which they’ll have to pay back. Without being able to work here afterwards, that’s not feasible now,” says Vicki Smith, director of Study in the UK, which offers advice on UK higher education to students in countries around the world.

A visa to work beyond four months after graduating from a university in the UK now normally requires a job with a minimum salary of at least £20,300 a year – and it can be even higher for some sectors. A mechanical engineer must earn a minimum of £24,100, an electrical engineer £23,600 and a design engineer £24,800.

Given that the UK graduate job market is hardly at its healthiest – latest data from the Destinations of Leavers of Higher Education survey shows that the median salary of employed graduates from full-time courses six months after graduation was £20,000 – this means that many overseas students will be heading home shortly after handing their graduation gown and mortarboard back to the hire shop.

And while PhD graduates are allowed stay on for a year to look for work or start a business through the Doctorate Extension Scheme, introduced in April 2013, their university must be willing to continue being their sponsor. This is different to USA, Canada, Australia and Germany who are extending their post-study work offer in recognition of the skills that international students can offer their job markets.

Despite all this, the UK is expected to retain its position as the second strongest market after the US, attracting an extra 126,000 international students, according to a study by the British Council’s education intelligence service.

But with China, for example, investing heavily in its own universities and colleges, there is likely to be a fall in the numbers of Chinese prepared to spend a king’s ransom to study abroad, and larger numbers wanting to apply to do their degree in one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

Turkish schools to stop teaching evolution

Evolution will no longer be taught in Turkish schools, a senior education official has said, in a move likely to raise the ire of the country’s secular opposition.

Alpaslan Durmuş, who chairs the board of education, said evolution was debatable, controversial and too complicated for students.

“We believe that these subjects are beyond their [students] comprehension,” said Durmuş in a video published on the education ministry’s website.

Durmuş said a chapter on evolution was being removed from ninth grade biology course books, and the subject postponed to the undergraduate period. Another change to the curriculum may reduce the amount of time that students spend studying the legacy of secularism.

Critics of the government believe public life is being increasingly stripped of the secular traditions instilled by the nation’s founder, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

The secular opposition has long argued that the government of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is pursuing a covert Islamist agenda contrary to the republic’s founding values. Education is a particularly contentious avenue, because of its potential in shaping future generations. Small-scale protests by parents in local schools have opposed the way religion is taught.

There is little acceptance of evolution as a concept among mainstream Muslim clerics in the Middle East, who believe it contradicts the story of creation in scripture, in which God breathed life into the first man, Adam, after shaping him from clay. Still, evolution is briefly taught in many high school biology courses in the region.

The final changes to the curriculum are likely to be announced next week after the Muslim Eid or Bayram festival at the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. The draft changes had been put forth for public consultation at the beginning of the year.

The subject of evolution in particular stirred debate earlier this year after Numan Kurtulmuş, the deputy prime minister, described the process as a theory that was both archaic and lacking sufficient evidence.

ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey is to stop teaching Darwin’s theory of evolution in high schools, deeming it controversial and difficult to understand, a senior education official said, a move likely to alarm secular Turks.

Critics say President Tayyip Erdogan and the Islamist-rooted AK Party are undermining modern Turkey’s secular foundations by pushing a conservative agenda, including tighter regulation of alcohol and other restrictions, since coming to power in 2002.

A chapter entitled “Beginning of Life and Evolution” will be deleted from the standard biology textbooks used in schools and the material will be available only to students who go on to university studies from age 18 or 19, Alparslan Durmus, head of the national education board said in an online address this week.

“We are aware that if our students don’t have the background to comprehend the premises and hypotheses, or if they don’t have the knowledge and scientific framework, they will not be able to understand some controversial issues, so we have left out some of them,” he said.

Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution is rejected by both Christian and Muslim creationists, who believe God created the world as described in the Bible and the Koran, making the universe and all living things in six days.

The Bible presents that as the exact time needed for creation but the Koran says “days” actually means long periods of time.

Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said earlier this year that Darwin theory, first published in the 19th century, was “old and rotten” and did not necessarily have to be taught.

A lobby group that promotes secular education, the Egitim-Is (“Education Work”) Union has voiced concern at the changes to the curriculum, saying it reduced emphasis on the achievements of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey who banned Islam from public life.