Author Topic: Primary education in Bangladesh after independent  (Read 1653 times)

Noor E Alam

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Primary education in Bangladesh after independent
« on: May 15, 2018, 01:13:38 PM »
Bangladesh era After the independence of Bangladesh, education was identified as a basic human right in the constitution of 1972. The duties of the state towards the education of the citizens were described in the articles XV (a), XVII and XXVIII (3). To design an appropriate education system for the independent and sovereign Bangladesh, an Education Commission was established under the chairmanship of the renowned scientist and educationist Kudrat-E-Khuda. The Commission, which published its report in 1974, recommended the introduction of compulsory education by 1983. But the recommendation could not implemented because of the political change in 1975.

While planning the First (1973-78) and Second Five Year Plan (1980-85), Universal Primary Education was introduced in 44 thanas under International Development Agency (IDA) by the assistance of World Bank. Moreover, elaborate plan was taken in the First Five Year Plan regarding Non-Formal Education, like- Open School, Literacy School, Feeder School, which helped a lot in advancing the primary education. Besides, ongoing primary educational activities remained unchanged in the Intermediary Two Year Plan (1978-80). While drafting the Second Five Year Plan (1980-85), An Primary Education Bureau was also established for the successful development of the primary education.

Primary Education Act-1981 was passed in 1981. Under this act, Local Education Authority was established in the Mahakuma level and the supervision, regulation, administration and management of primary education was vested in them. But unfortunately this Act was abolished before implementation. In 1982, the ordinance for administrative reform and decentralisation abolished Mahakuma, and upgraded thanas to sub-districts in 1983, and as a result of Ministry of Education bestowed the responsibility of the primary education of this country in the hands of the sub-district authority.

Primary education was given high priority in the Fourth Five year Plan (1990-95). In 1990, 'Compulsory Primary Education Act' was approved by the National Parliament and was introduced in 68 thanas around the country. Compulsory Primary Education Implementation Monitoring Unit (CPEIM) was formed in 1990. A new division naming Primary and Mass Education Division (PMED) was formed in August 1992 to strengthen the structure of primary education, ensuring education for all and removing illiteracy. Under this, to increase the rate of student admission, equal enrollment of boys and girls and to enhance the exact standard of education, three projects were taken, which were included in 'General Education Project (GEP). Later on the project to build school in natural disaster affected areas was also implemented. In 1995, in the remote village areas, for the children of 6-10 years, 'Satellite School' was established and primarily 4000 school in the country and increasing the number in 6000 within 2000 was the target, but at present, there is no trace of it.

In the Fifth Five Year Plan, among the 23 projects to improve primary education, the majority was properly implemented. Food for Education Program and Upazilla Resource Center was included in the development plan. Many development partners are cooperating with the government. There are Asian Development Bank (ADB), World Bank, and Department for International Development (DFID), German Technical Corporation, International Development Agency (IDA), Islamic Development Bank (IDB), Norwegian Agency for Development (NORAD), United Nation's Children Fund (UNICEF), Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) and USAID. Bangladesh government took a new project named Primary Education Development Program (PEDP) with the economic assistance of ADB for this purpose. As PEDP-1 was not fully successful. So PEDP-2 was taken in 2002 which targeted at increasing the rate of enrollment in the primary education and fully complete the education cycle which means, helping to improve the quality of education and rate of literacy.

Later, in January 2003, Primary and Mass Education Bureau was transferred to Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MOPME). The administrative chief of this ministry is the Secretary. For assisting the Secretary, 2 join secretary, 4 additional secretary, 9 senior assistant secretary, 1 senior assistant chief, 2 assistant chief, 1 statistician, and 56 employees are employed. The policy designing of the primary and non-formal education, administrative management and overall coordination in the responsibility of the Ministry. At present all the projects to enhance the quality of primary education are being implemented under PEDP-2, under the Ministry.

Under the Ministry of Primary and Mass education of Bangladesh, there are four types of school. They are: Government School, Examining School under PTI, registered private primary school and community school. The first two are funded by the government and the teachers of the private primary school receive 90% of their salary from the government. And Community School teachers receive a fixed amount of salary from the government. Beside this four kind of school, unregistered non-government primary school, High school adjoin primary school, kindergarten and some NGO coordinated primary schools are there. There is also Ebtedayi Madrasa or high Madrasa adjoin Ebtedayi Madrasa (equivalent to general primary school). Before there was a kind of school named satellite school but it was closed in 2004. So, in Bangladesh, at present there is 10 kind of primary school, which is almost near 80,401 in number and almost 1 crore and 18 lakh children are studying and the number of teachers are 3 and a quarter lakh.

Most of the national education commissions and committees recommended extending primary education from 5 to 8 years. Moreover, National Education Policy Implementation Committee published a report on primary education in 2000, where emphasises were on 8 years of primary education. Because according to them, primary education is prime stage of education for the majority of the country. After receiving this education a huge number of students start their life entering' into the labor market. So hoping that, 8 years span of education would provide an effective basis on their life. But considering the national resources constrain and limitations of management, in the present context of Bangladesh, the proposal is not applicable, so the duration of primary education is decided to keep within 5 years