Low fee private schools in developing countries: separating ideology from evidence
By Blog Editor, IOE Digital, on 27 May 2015
Carolina Junemann and Stephen Ball
It was 15 years ago that James Tooley first drew attention to the significant number of very disadvantaged children in developing countries attending private, low fee schools rather than the free (or otherwise cheaper), public alternatives. But even now, nobody knows exactly how many of these so-called Low Fee Private Schools (LFPS) are out there – largely because so many of them remain un-recognised and uncertified by governments.
However, Annual Status of Education (ASER) Pakistan estimates that 59% of children in urban areas and 23% in rural areas were enrolled in private schools in 2012; Pratham estimates that in India 28.3% of children in rural areas were enrolled in private schools in 2012.
Advocates of low fee private schools tend to blame the public sector for their proliferation, arguing that parents are voting with their feet. (more…)