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Raghuram Rajan, others: Right to Education "unnecessary, disruptive" for low-cost private, government schools


By Our Representative
In a surprising comment, a group of leading economists, who include former Reserve Bank of India governor Raghunath Rajan, has said that the Right to Education (RTE) law’s “input based” approach to education quality is “unlikely to succeed”. Pointing out that “extensive evidence” suggests most school inputs are “neither necessary nor sufficient for improving learning outcomes”, the economists say, “RTE has led to an unnecessary and disruptive closure of several low-cost private schools that parents were choosing of their own accord.”
Noting that “in many cases, even government schools are in violation of these input-based norms”, the economists recommend “repealing all input-based mandates for schools under the RTE (for both public and private schools) and changing the approach to regulation of private schools based on transparency and disclosure as opposed to input-based mandates.”  The comment has been made in the widely-reported “An Economic Strategy for India”, released by Rajan and other economists recently.
“Such an approach will facilitate (as opposed to inhibit) the expansion of quality private-
school providers”, the economists – who include Abhijit Banerjee, Pranjul Bhandari, Sajjid Chinoy, Maitreesh Ghatak, Gita Gopinath, Amartya Lahiri, Neelkanth Mishra, Prachi Mishra, Karthik Muralidharan, Rohini Pande, Eswar Prasad and E Somanathan – say, adding, “It would also facilitate localized cost-effective innovations by government schools, which may be made difficult by the RTE (such as hiring tutors without formal teaching credentials for providing supplemental instructional support).”

Comments

Unknown said…
Vindicates Janvikas strategy of village volunteers monitoring govt schools and
Ensuring both social and infrastructure compliance including role of smc’s
Gagan
Rahul Banerjee said…
They seem to think that the poor should make do with substandard education. The minimum inputs are really the minimum and our inability to provide them is a national same. Probably these economists also feel that the present scenario with regard to health services where quacks shoulder most of the responsibility should also be encouraged.

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