Dhaka, Bangladesh
Govt spending in education skimpy

Editorial

Govt spending in education skimpy

A pandemic sense of hopelessness grips the people as quality education seems to be something like a cry for the moon. The education in our country is virtually in a deep soup as no practical system commensurate to globally required standard for tertiary education has been evolved so far despite much tub-thumping by stalwarts at the helm. Apart from that, government spending in education in Bangladesh is not enough. Government expenditure in education should be at least four per cent of the GDP or 15 per cent of total government spending. In Bangladesh, however, it is still below 2 per cent of the GDP and 15 per cent of the total government expenditure, according to the global monitoring report 2017- 18 launched recently. The launching event was organised by the UNESCO Dhaka and Bangladesh Commission for UNESCO (BNCU) in the city. At least 33 countries including Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka did not meet the public expenditure in education as a share of the GDP and the total public expenditure in 2015 or the most recent year, the report states. The fact is known all over the world that education is the bedrock of the economic prosperity; nevertheless education has not been paid the high-speed attention it deserves. The report states that politically motivated selection often leads to uneducated or uninterested people being appointed to school management committees in Bangladesh. The country with expanding tertiary education systems is struggling to establish a quality assurance mechanism. Sadly, there has been no recognised quality assurance body like an accreditation council, which will be responsible for establishing quality in tertiary education. Though the government has passed the Accreditation Council Act, it is yet to be implemented. Bangladesh has as many as 40 public universities and 101 private universities, regulated by the University Grants Commission (UGC); but it is difficult for the UGC alone to fully oversee the performance and functions of the universities, the report observes. As the proof of the pudding is in the eating, the UGC capabilities of handling the litany of problems of universities have raised brows. On the other hand, the much-hyped higher education commission is a forlorn dream, which has not yet taken shape. Though the desired percentage of spending in education has not increased, the volume of money has certainly been raised in the education sector. We want to say emphatically that the allocated money must be properly utilised and for that corruption, wastage and misuse must be stopped to reap the full benefit of funds spent in education sector.

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