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STRATEGIC OBJECTIVE START DATE: 2004
STRATEGIC OBJECTIVE END DATE: 2009
Improve health, education, environment and other conditions for the global population
Department of State-USAID Strategic Goal
Indonesia’s education system is failing its youth. Education management is in disarray, funding is inadequate, quality is declining, and millions of children are dropping out each year. As a result, the majority of Indonesian children are being deprived of the skills and knowledge required to participate in a global economy and their own democracy. The poor quality of education is also leaving Indonesian children more susceptible to the appeal of those who advocate extreme solutions to the many problems the country is facing. A better quality education that stresses critical thinking and reasoning skills, tolerance, commitment to democratic processes, and an understanding of global viewpoints is needed to help counter extremism. From the early 1970s until the economic crisis of 1998, Indonesia’s education system grew rapidly under the guidance of a centralized government, achieving almost universal enrollment in primary school. Emphasis was placed on access, school construction, national curriculum, and centralized management. Little emphasis, however, was put on the quality of teaching and learning. In 2001, the decentralization process in Indonesia transferred responsibility for approximately 220,000 primary, junior secondary, and senior secondary schools to local governments. Funding for public education through senior secondary school, and the administration of 1.6 million teachers and education administrators, now resides with local governments unprepared to effectively manage these resources. To date, the Ministry of National Education (MONE) and provincial administration education offices have been unable to develop capabilities that allow local governments to improve education systems. Public funding for education is currently estimated to be between 1% and 2% of GDP, the lowest in the region. The Government of Indonesia (GOI) has recently committed through law to increase this to 20% of national and local budgets but it is uncertain if or when this target will be met. The vast majority of education funding goes to salaries for teachers and administrators, and little to supplies or training. Highly dependent on block grants from central government and lacking effective means to raise
their own sources of revenue, local governments’ education budgets go almost exclusively to salaries.
The poor quality of basic education in Indonesia is apparent. Results of the 1999 International Mathematics and Science Study showed that out of 38 countries, Indonesian students ranked 34th in math and 32nd in science. The majority of schools continue to employ “rote” methods of non-interactive learning. Teachers continue to rely on these antiquated techniques and teach “to the curriculum” rather than ensuring that children learn. For far too many children, this means trying to copy and memorize what
teachers write on a blackboard. The national curriculum has been widely criticized. While an updated curriculum will be introduced in 2004, few teachers are trained to teach it. Less than half of the primary teachers meet the 1989 standard of a two-year postsecondary teaching diploma. Only two-thirds of junior secondary teachers hold the minimum qualification of a three-year post secondary teaching diploma. Approximately half the children who start primary school do not complete junior secondary school. The combination of reduced public funding as a result of the economic crisis, higher costs of schooling, and lower family incomes result in higher dropout rates. According to a World Bank study, in 1998-99 dropout rates in primary schools rose 3.1% and in junior high rose 6.4%. Urban areas and girls, in particular, were impacted. As a result of increasing school drop-out rates, Indonesia is unable to meet the demand for nonformal education services. There is a nonformal education equivalency curriculum for those who have dropped out of school. However the capacity to provide these services is limited as relevant teaching resources and materials are largely unavailable.
The Strategic Objective
Over the next six years, $157 million in U.S. Government assistance will be used to IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF BASIC EDUCATION in Indonesia. A planned total of $133 million will be provided by USAID and $24 million will be programmed by the Embassy’s Public Affairs Section. If additional resources become available, funding for this initiative could increase up to $210 million over six years. Under the planning budget scenario of $157 million (of which $133 million will be programmed by USAID), assistance will directly reach up to 100 local governments, including currently underserved districts, and four million students (10% of the national total). Additional funding will raise the number of localities in which the program can operate and increase national impact. Current budgeting designated for out–of–school youth is limited and unable to fully address the needs of this target population. A proportion of any additional funding will target this group. To meet this Strategic Objective, the achievement of three intermediate results is
MORE EFFECTIVE DECENTRALIZED MANAGEMENT AND GOVERNANCE OF SCHOOLS IMPROVED QUALITY OF TEACHING AND LEARNING INCREASED EDUCATION RELEVANCE AND WORKFORCE SKILLS FOR YOUTH
Achieving the Objective
The announcement of the U.S. education initiative was met with a chorus of criticism rooted in suspicions that the U.S. wished to revise Indonesia’s national curriculum so that “children think like Americans,” and would apply pressure on the GOI to severely limit the educational role of Indonesia’s Islamic schools.
The Embassy and USAID have worked closely with Indonesian leaders to emphasize the secular intentions of the initiative and to overcome suspicion of U.S. intent, with the result that the U.S. initiative is now warmly welcomed and seen as timely. The program will select schools without reference to religion, using objective, neutral, secular criteria that neither promotes nor inhibits a religion. USAID will ensure that its assistance is available to all types of schools, whether Islamic, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, government, or private.
Apa pendapat kalian membaca tulisan ini? Dijamin ini bukan Cuma hayalan saya aja, dan juga bukan Cuma kebaikan hati dari USAID atau mungkin karena bahasa inggris saya yang pas-pasan sehingga salah menangkap maksudnya?
Tapi yang jelas saya tahu satu hal, tulisan ini dibuat pada 28 juli 2004 dalam dokumen setebal 512 halaman dengan judul USAID STRATEGIC PLAN for INDONESIA 2004 – 2008 STRENGTHENING A MODERATE, STABLE AND PRODUCTIVE INDONESIA. Tentu saja saya juga punya keyakinan bahwa tidak mungkin tidak ada udang di balik bakwan kan? Masa sii untuk bikin renstrat begitu aja para pakar kita ga mampu sampe harus menyewa usaid untuk mikir dan bikin solusi dengan versi mereka???