Myanmar government provides an 11-year public education program, which is a year less than other ASEAN countries. There are four types of public schools depending on the number of students and many monastery schools accommodating disadvantaged students. Teacher Pupil Ratio is 28.9 in primary school, 36.3 in middle school and 25.7 in high school. Study courses in high school consist of 8 electives and Burmese, English and Mathematics as major ones. (Source: Data Collection Survey on Education Sector in Myanmar by JICA, 2013). Private schools can operate with limited supervision from Government. Private schools provide pre-elementary, elementary, secondary and higher-education levels courses to meet popular demand for English language, computing, accounting and business-related training. There are increasing number of international schools, educational agencies and institutions collaborating with foreign universities. Ministry of Education is committed to spending higher budget in education sector. The Government spending for education sector was $US 1.4 billion in FY 2014-2015.
International private education providers are seeing many opportunities and starting to invest in Myanmar education sector. Myanmar’s education system has many challenges such as limited or no access to Internet, lack of advanced textbooks or laboratory equipment, and skill gaps in teaching with updated curriculums. The UK, USA, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia are the most popular countries to study for higher education among Myanmar students. More investors investing in private high school and middle schools also can be seen as a trend in this sector.
Major education policies in Myanmar have been implemented according to the 30-Year Long-Term Education Development Plan and the five-year medium-term plans that are formulated according to the Long-Term Plan. In November 2012, Myanmar’s Ministry of Education drafted National Education Promotion 20 Year Long Term Plan for which corresponds to the Comprehensive National Development Plan formulated by Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development. Hereafter, this 20-year Long Term Plan will supersede the existing 30-year plan and the four new five-year plans will be prepared nationally and by each sector.
Data Collection Survey on Education Sector in Myanmar Final Report, JAPAN INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION AGENCY, PADECO Co., Ltd. and IC Net Limited, February 2013
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