Regulating Private Tutoring
UNESCO’s Asia and Pacific Regional Bureau for Education (UNESCO Bangkok) has today launched a book entitled Regulating Private Tutoring for Public Good: Policy Options for Supplementary Education in Asia.
The book focuses on the extensive scale of private tutoring in countries of the region, regardless of their development status. For example surveys have found that:
- in Hong Kong, 54% of Grade 9 students and 72% of Grade 12 students receive private supplementary tutoring;
- in India, 73% of children aged 6-14 in rural West Bengal receive tutoring;
- in the Republic of Korea, the proportion reaches 86.8% in elementary school; and
- in Vietnam, respective proportions in lower and upper secondary schooling are 46% and 63%.
The tutoring consumes huge amounts of household finance, and has far-reaching implications for social inequalities, let alone the huge implications it has for school education services. Yet few governments have satisfactory regulations for the phenomenon.
The book’s authors are Mark Bray, UNESCO Chair Professor in Comparative Education at the University of Hong Kong, and Ora Kwo, Associate Professor in the same University. They have worked on this theme for over a decade, much of it in collaboration with UNESCO.
“UNESCO’s mandate permits and demands attention to this important issue,” remarked Professor Bray. “The organization coordinates the global Education for All (EFA) agenda, and leads the shaping of the post-2015 education framework. It is strongly concerned about equitable access to quality education.” UNESCO provides an arena in which governments can learn from each other about policies that are desirable and feasible. More
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