Causes of Low Education Quality in Indonesia

Low Education in Indonesia

The current state of education quality in Indonesia is highly concerning. This is evidenced, among other things, by UNESCO data (2000) on the Human Development Index (HDI), a composition of rankings in education, health, and per capita income, indicating a declining trend in Indonesia’s human development index.

Among 174 countries worldwide, Indonesia ranked 102nd (1996), 99th (1997), 105th (1998), and 109th (1999).

According to the Political and Economic Risk Consultant (PERC) survey, Indonesia’s education quality ranks 12th out of 12 countries in Asia, placing it below Vietnam.

Data reported by The World Economic Forum Sweden (2000) stated that Indonesia has low competitiveness, ranking only 37th out of 57 surveyed countries globally.

Furthermore, in a survey on education quality in Indonesia by the same institution, Indonesia is categorized as a follower rather than a technology leader among 53 countries worldwide.

Factors Contributing to Low Education Quality One of the factors contributing to low education quality in Indonesia is the weakness of educators in tapping into students’ potential.

Educators often impose their will without considering the needs, interests, and talents of individual students.

The weakness of our educators lies in their failure to address issues and potential in their students.

Education should focus on the needs of children, rather than forcing something that makes them uncomfortable in the pursuit of knowledge.

A good education process involves giving children the opportunity to be more creative.

One cause of low education quality in Indonesia is the lack of creativity among educators in guiding their students, along with a centralized curriculum that exacerbates the bleak picture of education.

The curriculum is based solely on government knowledge without considering community needs. Worse yet, education fails to produce creative and competent graduates.

The mistake lies in the fact that when the curriculum is developed in Jakarta, it may not consider the conditions experienced by communities in various regions.

What Causes the Low Quality of Education in Indonesia Causes of low education quality in Indonesia include issues of effectiveness, efficiency, and standardization of teaching.

These issues persist in Indonesian education. Specific problems in the education sector include:

  • Insufficient physical facilities
  • Low-quality teachers
  • Unprosperous teachers
  • Low student achievements
  • Unequal education distribution
  • Lack of relevance of education to needs
  • High cost of education

Entering the 21st century, education in Indonesia became tumultuous. The commotion is not due to the excellence of national education quality but the awareness of the dangers of educational lag in Indonesia.

This feeling arises due to several fundamental factors. One of them is entering the 21st century; the waves of globalization are strongly felt and open.

Technological advancements and changes bring a new awareness that Indonesia no longer stands alone.

Indonesia is in the midst of a new world, an open world that allows people to freely compare their lives with other countries.

What we feel now is the lag in the quality of education. Both formal and informal education. And this result is obtained after comparing it with other countries.

Education has indeed become a cornerstone in improving Indonesia’s human resources for national development.

Therefore, we should be able to enhance Indonesia’s human resources that can compete with those of other countries.

Improving Education Quality in Indonesia After careful observation, it is clear that a serious issue in improving education quality in Indonesia is the low quality of education at various levels, both formal and informal.

This is what hampers the provision of human resources with expertise and skills to meet the nation’s development in various fields.

The low quality of Indonesian education is also indicated by Balitbang data (2003) revealing that out of 146,052 elementary schools in Indonesia, only eight schools received global recognition in The Primary Years Program (PYP) category.

Out of 20,918 junior high schools in Indonesia, only eight schools received global recognition in The Middle Years Program (MYP) category.

Meanwhile, out of 8,036 high schools, only seven schools received global recognition in The Diploma Program (DP) category.

All of these lead to graduates being only able to seek employment rather than creating job opportunities themselves, even though job opportunities are very limited.

The low quality of education in Indonesia is deeply concerning because even the quality of its teachers ranks last among 14 developing countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

This position places this agrarian country below Vietnam, a country that gained independence only a few years ago.

Regarding reading skills, Indonesia ranks 39th out of 42 developing countries globally.

Solutions to Improve Education Quality in Indonesia Solutions to improve education quality in Indonesia include enhancing the quality of teachers and the quality of facilities and infrastructure in each school or university.

Not only in cities, even rural or remote areas far from the central government need adequate education.

The government also needs to improve the education curriculum according to the changing times so that education in Indonesia does not lag behind that of other more advanced countries.

This is also the fault of the state not taking education improvement in Indonesia seriously.

Education is a continuous process that never stops. In the education process, human dignity is tightly held by humans.

Education stakeholders are required to take responsibility so that better education outcomes are achieved.

My hope is that education in Indonesia can be on par with education in other countries with better educational quality. I will strive to do my best to make education in Indonesia of good quality and even respected by other countries in the field of education.

Writer: Muhammad Aulia Akhsan

Source: Penyebab Rendahnya Kualitas Pendidikan di Indonesia

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