Jan 28, 2017

Our educational system: more and better education?

Two people love drawing. Both use most of their free time engaging in activities related to this passion. They dream about it; both starve for an extra chance to put on some work and create. As time passes by, one goes further and decides to make it his profession: studies techniques at school and university, devotes entirely to the development of the required skills and ends up as a well-known artist. On the other hand, the second puts it aside accommodating his ‘hobby’ between school, his part-time job and taking care of his siblings; he also pursues tertiary education, but chooses a more common career given the concern that being an artist would not provide him enough earnings.

When the cause of such contrast proceeds from people facing different contexts, the doubt about how effective is the society in the provision of opportunities arises.

This is not an isolated case. It is actually a common situation in less developed countries, where people are used to put aside their passions and opt for a more within-the-box occupation that provides them enough money to survive.

On the other hand, achieving tertiary education in environments of lower income is already a too-far-to-get objective: countries as Eritrea and Chad had a gross involvement in tertiary education of only 3% in 2014[1]. In Latin America, the average involvement rate was 45% in the same year. The fact that it is higher than the world’s average of 34% may seem surprising, but there are some methodological issues that may explain the differences[2]. Ecuador’s rate is far below this regional average, with levels of approximately 18% in urban areas and less than 7% in rural areas.

To this respect, while lower levels of formal education are not necessarily a determinant of failure in the labour market, on average, it has been proved that education is connected to better jobs and higher income, both being closely related to welfare.

Self-selection, opportunities and education

Self-selection is conceived as responsible for most of the observed outcome disparities. The nature and impact of such traits has been highly explored, especially in sceneries that go from education to the general use of social programs.

But, recalling the initial inquiries: If we had people with similar characteristics and preferences, why would they achieve uneven outcomes depending on the environment? Why the odds of being a successful pilot, dancer, singer or, even worse, attaining any formal profession are different among countries? Those are some of the questions that development economics has been trying to answer for years. Some argue the environment implies a certain level of opportunities, and that most opportunities are related to a person’s experiences and education. Therefore, we get back to where we started.

That’s why governments, private initiatives, ONGs and international organisations make huge efforts to provide education access. They have been successful in addressing some of the most serious barriers to access primary, secondary and tertiary education. However, the impact in terms of educational outcomes, and in particular student learning, has been much less impressive. A recent publication by the WB analysed the impact of their programs supporting education in developing countries. It found significant weaknesses in student learning, measured by the change in performance. One of the most relevant examples is Peru, with only 8% of sixth graders reaching mastery levels in language and 7% in maths. A parallel study cites that, even though they were supposed to, “75% of the first graders could not read at all by the end of the school year” (Crouch, et. al., 2005). And more generally, some findings coincide in that children at schools outside the government systems achieve, on average, higher learning outcomes with equal or less resources.

Aiming to uncover the reasons behind that, the Public Expenditure Tracking Survey (PETS) reveals how much government funding actually reaches the classroom by identifying the main points of resource leakage. In some cases, it goes even further to evaluate characteristics of service delivery.
Among the most enlightening detections, higher government spending on education in Zambia had no effect on outcomes because parents counteracted it by reducing their spending in an equivalent amount. In Peru, the survey offered some insight on the complexities behind the distribution of funds from central government down to classrooms due to excessive bureaucracy. It was also the country with the lowest impact since there were frequent changes of authorities; such instability of institutions undermined ownership of the results and diminished incentives to change policies.

Another WB study examines the relationship between individuals’ skills and labour market outcomes for the working-age population in Colombian urban areas[3]. The main source is the Skills toward Employment and Productivity (STEP, 2012) household survey[4], which focuses on two main categories of personal skills: cognitive, understood as aptitudes to perform mental tasks such as comprehension or reasoning, and socio-emotional, that refer to personality traits and behaviours. The results showed that although both matter for pursuing tertiary education and getting favourable labour market outcomes, their roles differ. Cognitive skills were proved to be greatly associated with higher earnings, job formality or high-qualified occupations, while the second played a stronger role in terms of labour market participation.

Ecuador: Outside Vs. inside the classrooms
The statistics related to education attainment and access to scholarships for education in Ecuador during the last decade is remarkable. To begin with, education became free of charge up to the tertiary level, providing potential accessibility for all. Besides, figures from the WBD suggest that the country increased the average years of education in 1.3 between 2000 and 2015, and that such attainment was evenly distributed among all income quintiles.

In terms of educational programs, an important initiative is the scholarships program for higher studies in internationally recognised institutions all over the world with a register of 11.501 scholarships granted between 2007 and 2015 according to the National Secretary of Education, Science, Innovation and Technology (SENESCYT). There have also been projects involving the participation of foreign institutions and experts that allow for an important exchange of culture, knowledge and experiences, especially valuable in the labour market.

Nevertheless, as numbers hardly provide the whole scenario, I was curious about how much we had improved in terms of thinking outside the box while choosing professions. I still wanted to scratch and look under the numbers of new enrolled in higher education and granted scholarships.

Therefore, I started asking students, family and friends that have being part of the process about their experiences. Some of the questions include: “If you could choose anywhere to live, where would you go?” “If you could do anything you want for a living, what would you choose?” If you were given a wish to change your life, what would you ask for?” Clearly, the process was all but formal or well-designed so numbers loose importance. However, capturing how far it seems to people the achievement of their passions offers some insight on the situation. People thinking that emigrating would be their ticket to happiness; others studying business because that career was the only option with space left or, even worse, forgetting about their life plan in order to afford a living… it tells us that there is still much to be done.

What is next?
The trends exhibited in the Education Policy And Data Centre (EPDC) policy brief show that achieving the last 10% of educational coverage could take even longer than achieving the first of 90%. Also, those included in the remaining part generally involve people in rural areas, in generally excluded states or provinces, female, and the poor. This pattern is a call for attention as it suggests that policies in developing countries present systematic failures, which we have not complied with yet.

New approaches are needed if we are about to give access to education and other relevant opportunities to the ‘remaining’ part of the population. New indicators must be included when evaluating the performance of social policy in terms of education. Growing figures of coverage are to be celebrated with no doubt, but quality of education and its actual impact on the population is still far to be achieved. Awareness of this limitation and our taking part with this responsibility would be a wise way to re-direct the journey.

The article has no conclusions as it consists of an invitation for readers to contribute, from their experience and perspective. Do you agree with the approach taken to improve education in Ecuador? What has been your experience about the taken measures? What else could be done in order to build more reliable instruments to assess it? What should the public policy intend to drive in order to provide education with real use and impact? Your contribution matters, leave us a comment!

[1] http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SE.TER.ENRR?year_high_desc=false
[2] First, this average is upwards biased since there is no information for 31 out of 44 countries considered in the region by the World Bank (WB), and the ones that present information are usually those with better results. Second, compared to the average for Europe and Central Asia (65%), while the highest values are similar, the averages differ by 20% as a result of the greater dispersion.
[3] Acosta et.al., 2015


Bryan said...

Maybe we need to make more benchmarking in the outcomes of people who studies outside and achieves their goals, but once they accomplish their objectives, why most of them don't want to come back? Most of people say: "with grit you can do anything" and "if you want to change the world, start with you and then with people around you", but it seems no one wants to start. I could be a result of the barriers created around, the poor grit of students to learn, the lack of appreciation about the facilities recieved, the barriers of mind, etc., one of these provokes another until someone appears and stops the chain-effect.

David Nu said...

Thank you for acknowledging the power of our Our educational system .Every teacher is a leader who always push there students to achieve the goal in life .https://typicalstudent.org is also a nice platform for students as well as teachers.

George said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Abdul wasay said...

The biggest issue is economic constraints and also the indisputable fact that children usually got to make a choice between work and faculty. In a perfect world, we might be able to demonstrate the link between faculties and future earnings. we want to induce higher at promoting the worth of education to oldsters and youngsters.
chinese class

Timy Tons said...

I like Your Article about Catholic Priests and Former Abortionist Confront Congress on Meaning of “Abortion” | Fr. Frank Pavone's Blog Perfect just what I was searching for! . Best Online Degree

Brandon Steven said...

Well, Great article to read about the education system. Education became free of charge up to the tertiary level, providing potential accessibility for all. Thanks for sharing such a great article.

William Hook said...

Very nice article on education system! This article is very appreciative and interesting. Keep sharing such posts with us.

Electrical Engineering Assignment said...

Loved your viewpoint on the education system, especially the tertiary education. Worth sharing

Rebecca said...

Thanks for sharing this interesting blog with us.My pleasure to being here on your blog..Iwannacomebeck here for new post from your site 1z0-628 questions answers

Timy Tons said...

Your writing is fine and gives food for thought. I hope that I’ll have more time to read your articles . Regards. I wish you that you frequently publish new texts and invite you to greet me Cybersecurity Certification

Timy Tons said...

I enjoy the helpful information you provide in your articles. grammarly discount

andrea said...

This is a great motivating content.I am fairly much happy with your great work.You put really very information. See this link for info

Kayal said...

Great work! Really I enjoy to read your content and very helpful for improving myself. Keep blogging...
Pega Training in Chennai
Pega Course in Chennai
Linux Training in Chennai
Tableau Training in Chennai
Spark Training in Chennai
Primavera Training in Chennai
Excel Training in Chennai
Corporate Training in Chennai
Power BI Training in Chennai

sheela rajesh said...

Thanks for providing such great and useful informations on your blog.update more data later.
Hadoop Training in Chennai
Big data training in chennai
Big Data Training in Anna Nagar
JAVA Training in Chennai
Python Training in Chennai
Android Training in Chennai
Hadoop training in chennai
Big data training in chennai
big data training in velachery

janakikrishnan said...

The information mentioned in the blog is true and useful to freshers. Keep going.
AWS Training in Bangalore
AWS Course in Bangalore
Best AWS Training in Bangalore
AWS Training Institutes in Bangalore
AWS Certification Training in Bangalore
AWS Training Center in Bangalore

Vicky Ram said...

Great article! Really very useful for developing my knowledge and I hope more valuable details
from your post. Thanks for your good job.

Guest posting sites

kavithasathish said...

Great content and it is really innovative to everyone.
spanish language in chennai
spanish courses in chennai
TOEFL Classes in Chennai
French Language Classes in Chennai
pearson vue test center in chennai
German Language Course in Chennai
best french classes in chennai
french coaching classes in chennai

mtom said...

we will be buying more christmas ornaments these christmas because we like to decorate more.. thesis writing

Durai Moorthy said...

Thanks for sharing an informative article. keep update like this...
AWS Training in Bangalore
RPA Training in Kalyan Nagar
Data Science with Python Training Bangalore
AWS Training in Kalyan Nagar
RPA training in bellandur
AWS Training in bellandur
Marathahalli AWS Training Institues
Kalyan nagar AWS training in institutes
Data Science Training in bellandur
Data Science Training in Kalyan Nagar

jagedheesh kumar said...

I would definitely thank the admin of this blog for sharing this information with us. Waiting for more updates from this blog admin.
salesforce Training in Bangalore
uipath Training in Bangalore
blueprism Training in Bangalore

naveed1111 said...

Nice, beneficial piece of writing. We appreciate you this high-quality subject matter, I’m guessing you’ll on a regular basis get more web log, due to the fact Document i’m fascinated by this unique niche. May possibly right now search for this short article describes. Thank you catalog! juvenile justice

Deepthi said...

Wonderful Blog!!! Your post is very informative about the latest technology. Thank you for sharing the article with us
aws Training in Bangalore
python Training in Bangalore
hadoop Training in Bangalore
angular js Training in Bangalore
bigdata analytics Training in Bangalore

Bhanu Ravi said...

Very nice post here and thanks for it .I always like and such a super blog of these post.Excellent and very cool idea and great blog of different kinds of the valuable information's.
aws Training in Bangalore
python Training in Bangalore
hadoop Training in Bangalore
angular js Training in Bangalore
bigdata analytics Training in Bangalore

ethiraj raj said...

I am impressed by the way of writing your blog and topics which you covered. I read all your post which is useful and informative.
aws Training in Bangalore
python Training in Bangalore
hadoop Training in Bangalore
angular js Training in Bangalore
bigdata analytics Training in Bangalore

Reshma said...

Get inspired by your blog. Keep doing like this....
Ethical Hacking Course in Chennai
Ethical hacking course in bangalore
Ethical hacking course in coimbatore
Ethical Hacking Training in Bangalore
Ethical hacking Training institute in bangalore
Ethical Hacking in Bangalore
Hacking Course in Bangalore
Ethical Hacking institute in Bangalore
Selenium Training in Bangalore
Software Testing course in Bangalore

lokesh said...

I am inspired to read this blog. keep sharing more informaive blog.
DevOps Training in Chennai
DevOps Training in Bangalore
DevOps Training in Coimbatore
Best DevOps Training in Bangalore
DevOps Course in Bangalore
DevOps Course in Marathahalli
DevOps Training in btm
DevOps Training Institutes in Bangalore
Spoken English Classes in Bangalore
Data Science Courses in Bangalore

Chinese tuition said...

Thanks for sharing the best information and suggestions, I love your content, and they are very nice and very useful to us. If you are looking for the best Primary Chinese Tuition, then visit Chinese Distinction. I appreciate the work you have put into this.

IT said...

IEEE Final Year projects Project Centers in Chennai are consistently sought after. Final Year Students Projects take a shot at them to improve their aptitudes, while specialists like the enjoyment in interfering with innovation. For experts, it's an alternate ball game through and through. Smaller than expected IEEE Final Year project centers ground for all fragments of CSE & IT engineers hoping to assemble. Final Year Project Domains for IT It gives you tips and rules that is progressively critical to consider while choosing any final year project point.

Spring Framework has already made serious inroads as an integrated technology stack for building user-facing applications. Spring Framework Corporate TRaining the authors explore the idea of using Java in Big Data platforms.
Specifically, Spring Framework provides various tasks are geared around preparing data for further analysis and visualization. Spring Training in Chennai

The Angular Training covers a wide range of topics including Components, Angular Directives, Angular Services, Pipes, security fundamentals, Routing, and Angular programmability. The new Angular TRaining will lay the foundation you need to specialise in Single Page Application developer. Angular Training

cathrine juliet said...

Thanks for sharing with us that awesome article you have amazing blog..............

Web Designing Course Training in Chennai | Web Designing Course Training in annanagar | Web Designing Course Training in omr | Web Designing Course Training in porur | Web Designing Course Training in tambaram | Web Designing Course Training in velachery

Tanika Co Valda said...

Big data is a term that describes the large volume of data – both structured and unstructured – that inundates a business on a day-to-day basis. big data projects for students But it’s not the amount of data that’s important. Project Center in Chennai It’s what organizations do with the data that matters. Big data can be analyzed for insights that lead to better decisions and strategic business moves.

Spring Framework has already made serious inroads as an integrated technology stack for building user-facing applications. Corporate TRaining Spring Framework the authors explore the idea of using Java in Big Data platforms.
Specifically, Spring Framework provides various tasks are geared around preparing data for further analysis and visualization. Spring Training in Chennai

The Angular Training covers a wide range of topics including Components, Angular Directives, Angular Services, Pipes, security fundamentals, Routing, and Angular programmability. The new Angular TRaining will lay the foundation you need to specialise in Single Page Application developer. Angular Training

mtom said...

A lot of these e-mail addresses really are tricks! Any IRS . GOV will not transmit a person e-mails, plus unquestionably wouldn’t notify that you the simple fact you’re owed a good discount. 토토사이트

Siscom said...

i love to watch movies that made it to the box office, they are usually great movies with good story., 토토사이트

Dewa Poker said...

I’ve read some good stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how much effort you put to create such a great informative website. 바카라사이트


Kinds of Engines vacation packages ‘re affordable, of benefit nevertheless, you pick up every single single single ability required by specific bargain. Search Engine Optimization 청주출장안마

Anonymous said...


Mega said...

It is a very informative blog, Thanks for taking the time to share the good article.
android interview questions
ms excel interview questions