Budget 2014 -
Apart from the obvious, here are 15 easy high impact
solutions that should be funded in Budget 2014, India
• Phased increase in spending from 3-6 percent as
promised in the manifesto.
• Build governance processes, outcome targets etc.
and link them to the additional funding.
Investment in school support
• Allocate funds for mechanisms that support schools on the
Three Pillars: accountability, governance, outcomes.
Award schools directly upon application.
• Transparent Open Access mechanism for tracking
progress nationwide for both hard and soft infrastructure,
its utilisation and the results on investment.
• Create a comprehensive teacher feedback mechanism
that is available to both private and public sector schools
to help teachers deliver better outcomes or identify
structural hurdles that need interventions.
Reduce Teacher Shortages
• Cash Incentives for new teachers to join the
profession to reduce shortages. Smart design will
serve national priorities too.
• Train para teachers locally and provide continuous
(even tech based) teacher training to them based on
experiential learning and reflection. Fund the para
teacher training project.
Teacher and Faculty
Performance Incentive Scheme
• Fund for incentives for excellent teacher
performance based on qualification, attendance
and student outcomes.
• The incentives can be extended to other teaching
cadre building activities including research,
mentoring, reading, reflective practices, innovation
Invest in Knowledge
• National Database for Academic Papers and
National citation indices.
• National Case Clearing House for Indian case
studies especially in Education.
• Continue to invest in data gathering and
dissemination via DISE etc. to increase range and
usability of data for constructive policy interventions
• Improve Education sector Accountability on
Outcomes not Inputs
• Every school to have their own website with
mandated information updated every quarter.
Evaluate Government and Private sector schools
equally. Create School Transparency and
Accountability fund to enable this.
• Integrate the National Digital Literacy Mission with
the Teachers mission in an Special Purpose
Vehicle(SPV) that has responsibility for training and
supporting teachers in new literacies and applying them
to teaching and learning. Schemes and missions to have
monitoring and evaluation integral to the structure
including self reporting
• Build databases of in class activities to create local digital
textbooks and workbooks in addition to traditional texts.
Funding required for Local Digital Textbooks
Program. Incentive funding for multilingual output.
State of Education Report
• An address to the nation and parliament on National
Education Day that reports on the State of
Education in India including interim progress on
budget announcements. This is necessary to keep
up the momentum of activity and accountability
within the system.
Invest in Education Research
• Set up at least 6 national and 12 regional research think
tanks on education, each charged with a different aspect
of the issues at hand. with a focus on applied education
research. (e.g. access, quality, equity, employability, skills, research
including micro-research, accountability, international standards,
competition, dynamic standards (NOS) etc.)
• Invest in understanding what makes better learning
happen in India - currently we only depend on foreign
• Use recommendations to drive policy and investments in
strategically important sectors of education
Governance in Education
• Allocate funds for governance training for school
• Invest in National Governance Standards for
schools and universities.
• Apply similar values and principles - Standards- to
diverse range of institutions.
• Integrate vocational and professional skills in school education in years 9
and 10 by allowing schools to choose to participate in projects or national
competitions that are based on national priorities. Give grades and
certificates for significant participation in nation building via
application of skills. Allocate funding for such national projects and
• Create and encourage the uptake of vocational and professional subjects at
the class 12 level at the standard that allows income streams at that level.
(The certificate should get you a job). Invest in professional development
of such qualification via Curriculum Development funds.
• Encourage higher education GER with enhanced wage premium for further
studies to enhance standards. Ensure entry to post secondary education
does not have to be directly after school - it can be after a few years of
earning (e.g. CA model)
Fee Concession Fund
accessed via APL
• Create a Fee concession fund for skilled and talented individuals when
certified so via APL. Give certification for ‘Accreditation of Prior Learning’
(APL) when skills are demonstrated on public record
• Demonstration of skills learned outside educational institutions can be
certified and the credits earned can be encashed to get fee and time
concessions in all post secondary education.(exemption from module and
module fees) (Institutes to retrieve fees from Fee concession fund or APL
• Remove the hierarchy between Academic, Professional and Vocational
degrees via similar funding arrangements
• Abolish the term Higher Education and introduce the concept of post-
secondary education where all academic, professional and vocational
degrees are equal.
• Bring in foreign universities and global investments with
adequate checks and balances and very clear goals and
expectations from them. Budgetary concessions may be
• All foreign universities to support the formation of six
community colleges with diverse models or invest in skills
training, for example. Alternate Nation building
contributions may be negotiated.
• Grant Tax /Rent and rates benefits for all nation building
activities for all institutions via designated schemes.
Core/Priority Skills Councils
• Recognise Management, Teaching and
Governance (including small businesses) as skills
and set up sector skills councils for them.
• Allow Skills Funding to core sectors essential for
• Create a Student Loans refinancing agency that insures student debt and
regulates the sector.
• Create a monitoring unit for current student loan schemes to ensure uptake.
• Create a national scholarship scheme to reward hard working students
over and above baseline student funding. Let no student be deprived of food
(or life) because they could not buy books.
• Open the sector up to private Philanthropy with an Education Relief Fund in
line with the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund with tax relief.
• Open up more areas for PPP as a funding mechanism for good quality
capacity while professionalising management teams and retaining the
governance function - for skills, vocational, professional qualifications as a
priority and for the sector as a whole.