Increasing Access to Quality Education: the Best Practices
One dollar invested in one year of schooling results to more than US$5 increase in earnings. The value of education is undoubted. If girls receive quality education their lifetime income is expected to double from US$15 trillion. Improving the quality of education must be the priority of all stakeholders.
The gearing of efforts to quality and use of the right practices is the way forward. But what are the proper methods?
Technology Driven Measures
Technology has already improved education. From accessibility of study materials online, online group study sessions, advanced research, to the ability to complete a degree online. But, there are still impediments such as:
- The cost of study equipment is still not economically viable for many underdeveloped countries.
- Some students still lack classrooms and study books in third world countries.
- Internet misuse resulting in VPN college ban. While VPN ban is intended to regulate internet use, it has more harm than good; it leads in fewer research options and internet autonomy.
Achievement of better results is possible if teachers embrace technology, and governments invest in improving available technological infrastructure. There is a lot of unexploited opportunity in mobile, making classes interactive and virtual assessment of students.
Reducing Overcrowding in Classes
Overcrowding in schools is twofold; either the teachers are few, or available classes cannot contain the existing number of students. Both problems are common and demand a lot of resources. The problems result in poor connection or relationships between students and teachers and poor addressing of individual student needs.
Improvement in School Funding
Many of the challenges affecting education quality are a reflection of years of inadequate funding to schools. Lack of classrooms or overcrowding, slow adoption of technology and lack of teachers are some problems resolvable with increased funding.
Well managed schools invest part of received funds into students bursaries and scholarships. Meaning, more students from poor backgrounds access education as funding increases.
A case example is the government of Venezuela, which partnered with the World Bank in a project which made it possible for 8000 students; from poor backgrounds to access quality education.
Education is a universal right, and while governments have a forefront role in ensuring quality education, other stakeholders, policy-makers, and corporates have to come in and support them.