ERIC Number: ED465476
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
West Meets East in Central Asia: Competing Discourses on Secondary Education Reform in the Kyrgyz Republic.
De Young, Alan J.
The Kyrgyz Republic--a remote mountainous region--is one of five former Soviet states in central Asia. This case study begins with a brief overview of the political and economic situation of the Kyrgyz Republic and its relation to aims of Soviet schooling in the 20th century. A critique of the Soviet schooling model by foreign academics before and after the breakup of the former USSR is followed by a discussion of how economic collapse during the 1990s led to numerous curricular and organizational crises in Kyrgyz education. The second half of this paper details the forces and actors dedicated to "improving" Kyrgyz schools in the new millennium. Since the Soviet breakup, foreign actors have been trying to influence economic and educational policy consistent with their worldviews and political agendas. There is great disagreement between foreigners and locals as to the means and ends of schooling and about how (or even if) schools should be "fixed." A new pro-Western Minister of Education put together a strategic planning process for reforming the nation's schools. Brainstorming efforts, primarily involving foreigners and high-level administrators, focused on decentralization, corruption in the university system, the need to cut higher-education budgets to fund reforms in secondary education, consolidating rural schools, academic standards, teacher retraining and salaries, efficiency, and technology. The procedures, dynamics, and recommendations of the working group on school management and minimum standards and the working group on teacher retraining and new technologies are detailed. Resistance and barriers to change are discussed. (Contains 33 footnotes.) (TD)
Descriptors: Accountability, Decentralization, Educational Change, Educational Finance, Educational Needs, Educational Policy, Foreign Countries, Group Dynamics, Higher Education, International Relations, Policy Formation, Politics of Education, Professional Development, Resistance to Change, Rural Education, School Administration, Secondary Education, Teacher Education
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Kyrgyzstan