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Decentralising Indonesian Education: The Promise and the Price

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This article examines patterns of decentralisation in education in Indonesia, which were prompted by forces of globalisation and the World Bank in particular. The authors conclude that decentralisation in a country with little experience in local autonomy and democracy is unlikely to produce desirable outcomes in terms of quality schooling, accountability and efficiency. Their study shows that apart from devolution of power and authority, all major models of decentralisation reflect democratic decision-making process and increasing community involvement in managing schools. The authors note a widespread failure of decentralization in education, which helped to consolidate social stratification and rural-urban inequalities in education.

Keywords: Indonesia; Islamic schools; decentralisation; educational centralisation; inequality; national school system; rural/urban divide; social stratification

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Sydney

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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  • World Studies in Education is a bi-annual, refereed, international journal offering a global overview of significant international and comparative education research. Its focus is on educational reforms and policy affecting institutions in the global economy.
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