With the daily challenges posed by economic difficulty and other threats, governments in developing countries are working very hard to ensure that their educational institutions continue to provide a standard of education that can make its citizens at part with the educated people in more economically sound countries. To a certain extent, these Third World countries have succeeded in their crusade for quality education. The problem is that a good education comes with a price and it is often a price that many people in Third World countries are not able to pay. So, although quality education is available, it is still unreachable for a large segment of a developing country’s population.
Certainly, it is impressive to see that developing countries have educational institutions that are world-class and which offer education that can rival that provided by wealthier nations around the world. There is a clear recognition of the role that education plays in overcoming hardship and poverty. However elusive it may be, a good education is still viewed as the best way to a better life.
Among the developing countries that have superb educational systems are such “emerging markets” as Mexico, India, Brazil, Turkey, the Philippines, Egypt, South Africa, Malaysia, Thailand, much of South America and several of the Persian Gulf Arab States.
Obviously, the poorest of the poor in these countries will have a hard time getting into the best schools in their vicinity. Of course, there are always scholarship programs available but these are few. Besides, people at the lowest spectrum of the economic scale are more concerned with more pressing issues related to their mere survival such as where to find food and money for clothing and shelter. After these basic needs are met, that is the only time that parents can really focus on their children’s schooling. In fact, studies indicate that once their basic economic needs are met, the first priority of most poor families is how to send their children to a good school.
India recently launched EDUSAT, an educational program aimed at giving quality education to even its poorest citizens. Among the group’s first initiatives is the development of a $100 laptop which the government hopes to distribute by 2007 to public schools all over the country.