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  • There is a big boom in private education all over the world,

  • you see it in schooling numbers. So...

  • the numbers of people going to private primary

  • has gone up from 10 to 17% over the last 15 years.

  • Secondary has gone up from nine to 27%

  • and then if you look in particular countries,

  • you find ,for instance in China, the big increase

  • in people going to elite private schools

  • but also huge business in terms of people getting

  • online tuition, parents are finding ways to spend money

  • on the great competition to improve their children's brains.

  • Yes. So the resurgence is happening for a few different

  • reasons. One of them is that incomes are going up,

  • the birthrates are going down.

  • So in families all over the world there is more money

  • to spend on each child.

  • If you look at the Chinese one child policy,

  • you can get six people, four grandparents,

  • two parents, all of them willing to invest in the education

  • of one child. And at the same time,

  • you've had the whole of the world economy changing so that

  • there are fewer unskilled jobs everywhere.

  • Almost all decent jobs require you

  • to have a qualification of some sort.

  • So the great advantage of private education

  • is that it's fantastically good getting children in school.

  • So in countries where people are moving around a lot

  • which is most of the developing world

  • and where populations are growing swiftly

  • where you get this huge swift urbanization.

  • Governments just can't keep up!

  • So you'll get governments like Pakistan which

  • you know in Punjab which is a massive state struggling with fast growing cities

  • has partnered up with the private sector to send

  • poor kids who would otherwise not be getting schooling

  • at all into private schools.

  • And they're doing that with over two million kids.

  • And private schools can also be really really good

  • because you know often parents are willing to spend

  • masses of money and you get

  • a really high quality of education.

  • It is a dilemma for society.

  • Governments need to concern themselves about equality

  • and about social mobility, things that the private sector

  • discourages rather than encourages.

  • The problem with private schools is that they do tend

  • to increase inequality. When parents are allowed to spend

  • money on their children, they will spend as much as they can,

  • so obviously rich kids go to better schools.

  • You see China which is increasingly putting controls

  • on the expansion in the school's business.

  • It's clearly pretty uncomfortable about it.

  • Rather than trying to shut it down,

  • governments need to be trying to work with it.

  • Now there is a cost. If you allow the private sector

  • to operate, you are gonna get a higher level of inequality.

  • But I think that that is a price worth paying

  • for the liberty, for the resources, for the better brains,

  • for the innovation, for the quality of education,

  • and the breath of education that you get if you allow the private sector to operate.

  • So I think governments must look

  • at the private sector as a potential partner,

  • not as they do in some places as an enemy.

There is a big boom in private education all over the world,

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A2 BEG UK private private sector sector education spend schooling

Is private education good for society? | The Economist

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    Silvia W.   posted on 2019/04/15
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