The in­vest­ment in ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor

Bhutan Times - - Editorial -

T he an­nual bud­get for the fis­cal year 2016 – 2017 has been ap­proved by the na­tional assem­bly last Mon­day as per the mo­tion moved by the Fi­nance Min­is­ter. The an­nual bud­get for the fi­nan­cial Year 2016-17 amounts to Nu.54,828.228 mil­lion. About Nu.25,387.034 mil­lion are for the cur­rent ex­pen­di­ture and 29,441.94 mil­lion is for the cap­i­tal ex­pen­di­ture.

About 20% of the an­nual bud­get al­lot­ted for the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor, it is clear that the govern­ment is giv­ing top pri­or­ity to the de­vel­op­ment of the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tor and the ed­u­ca­tion of our chil­dren. The sec­tor also has to de­velop the ca­pac­ity of our teach­ers and cur­ricu­lum per­son­nel who work on the de­vel­op­ment of the syl­labus of the stu­dents study­ing in the schools.

In view of the im­por­tance of qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion and in line with the Bhutan Ed­u­ca­tion Blue­print 2014-2020, Nu.10,924.282 mil­lion is al­lo­cated to bring re­forms for en­hance ac­cess and qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion.

As part of the school re­form pro­gramme,24 cen­tral schools were established in 2015 and 27 in 2016 and as a pro­vi­sion for an­other eight cen­tral schools is ear­marked to be established in 2017 aca­demic year. A sum of Nu.1, 623.18 mil­lion is al­lo­cated for op­er­a­tion and main­tance of cen­tral schools and Nu.1, 352.659 mil­lion for de­vel­op­ment of ad­di­tional in­fra­struc­tures and fa­cil­i­ties. Of the to­tal al­lo­ca­tion for in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment, Nu.661.569 mil­lion is bud­geted un­der Dzongkhag Ed­u­ca­tion Sec­tor.

En­hanc­ing qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion em­anates from a set of good facul- ties and fa­cil­i­ties in all ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tutes. As such Nu.116.848 mil­lion has been al­lo­cated for pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment of teach­ers in schools and Nu.22 mil­lion and Nu.10.820 mil­lion for fac­ulty de­vel­op­ment of Royal Uni­ver­sity of Bhutan(RUB) and Royal In­sti­tute of Man­age­ment (RIM) re­spec­tively.

Fur­ther, Nu.23 mil­lion is em­barked to ini­ti­ate prepara­tory works for es­tab­lish­ment of three col­lages in Mon­gar, Trash­gang and Trashiyangtse.

In or­der to pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties to pur­sue higher stud­ies, a sum of Nu.1, 006.471 mil­lion is al­lo­cated for var­i­ous schol­ar­ships within and out­side the coun­try and Nu. 25.8 mil­lion for as­sis­tance to pri­vately en­rolled med­i­cal stu­dents. Fur­ther, Nu.37.620 mil­lion is al­lo­cated for pro­vid­ing in­ter­est free ed­u­ca­tion loans to eco­nom­i­cally dis­ad­van­taged stu­dents to pur­sue higher stud­ies.. More­over, Nu. 43. 651 mil­lion is al­lo­cated to strengthen Early Child­hood Care De­vel­op­ment (ECCD), Nu .82. 189 mil­lion for Non -for­mal Ed­u­ca­tion (NFE) pro­gramme.

The Royal Ed­u­ca­tion Coun­cil is al­lo­cated with Nu. 37.155 mil­lion to de­velop cur­ricu­lum/text­books, con­duct sem­i­nars/ work­shops , re­view, se­lec­tion and ap­provals of teach­ing and learn­ing ma­te­ri­als.

How­ever much needs to be done in the ed­u­ca­tion sec­tors on de­cen­tral­iz­ing the pro­cure­ment process, draft­ing na­tional ed­u­ca­tion pol­icy and na­tional youth pol­icy.

As re­marked by Brad Henry no other in­vest­ment yields as great a re­turn as the in­vest­ment in ed­u­ca­tion and the we are do­ing the same too.

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