SSRP gets 2-year term extension

- BINOD GHIMIRE, Kathmandu

Nov 12, 2014-The government and donor agencies have agreed to extend the deadline of School Sector Reform Programme (SSRP), which is facing legal hurdles for full-fledged implementation. The deadline of the programme has been extended by two years to 2017.

The government and the eight SSRP development partners signed an agreement to this end. Of the eight donor agencies, Asian Development Bank, European Union and Finland signed the agreement on Sunday while Australia, World Bank, Unicef and Norway gave their written commitment on Wednesday. The SSRP was implemented with joint support of the government and donor partners in 2009.

According to Hari Lamsal, joint-secretary at the Ministry of Education, the donors would contribute around US$ 170 million (around Rs 14.45 billion) to the programme for the extended period. The government had sought around Rs 25 billion for the programme. Lamsal said the aid volume may increase after the support from Global Partnership for Education and other INGOs.

The extension of the SSRP, according to the government and donor agency, is aimed at accomplishing key policy goals such as literacy for all in general and deprived group in particular, free and compulsory basic education, inclusive secondary education, quality of education in general and in community school in particular.

Though the programme was launched four years ago, the government is yet to come up with the Education Act, which is essential for the programme’s full implementation.

The plan to restructure school level education, provide compulsory education, form Central Examination Board after dissolving the Higher Secondary Education Board, too, has not been implemented due to the legal hurdle.

The SSRP envisions restructuring school level education in basic (grade one to eight) and secondary levels (grade nine to 12) from existing primary (grade one to five), lower-secondary (six to eight), secondary (nine to 10) and higher secondary (grade 11 to 12) levels.

“Owing to the lack of new Act, we also are facing problems in restructuring the curriculum,” Lamsal said. Though the government tabled the bill for the new Act at the Parliament, it could not be endorsed due to the differences among political parties and other stakeholders.

Published: 13-11-2014 09:12

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