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Unformatted text preview: 193 Improving Educational Quality in Honduras: Building a Demand-Driven Education Market 11 Fernando Yitzack Pavon is a Master of Public Administration candidate at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University. I MPROVING E DUCATIONAL Q UALITY IN H ONDURAS : B UILDING A D EMAND-D RIVEN E DUCATION M ARKET Fernando Yitzack Pavon On average, Honduras spends much more on public education than other Latin American countries. However, Honduras’ increased spending on education has not resulted in superior educational outcomes. The Honduran education system faces problems of general service provision, including low teacher accountability and poor performance. This paper briefly out- lines how the education sector can build upon the foundation laid by PROHECO, a community-based education program financed by the World Bank (WB) and other countries’ expe- riences to foster a more productive educational system driven by demand. By tackling the aforementioned quality-hindering issues through the decentralization of the education system, implementing a community performance management mecha- nism (performance-based bonuses) and introducing vouchers for lower income students, the Honduran education sector would create a new competitive market-oriented environment for the provision of education leading to increased quality in the delivery of education. I NTRODUCTION The Honduras Poverty Assessment consistently suggests that low levels of growth and persistent poverty in Honduras are linked to low levels of human capital formation (World Bank 2006c). The Honduran education 194 Fernando Yitzack Pavon system faces the common problems of general service provision, including lack of affordable access, poor administration, low technical quality, low teacher accountability and stagnant productivity. To improve the delivery of educational services, Honduras will need to encourage initiatives aimed at generating a new market-oriented envi- ronment. Valuable lessons can be learned from recent experiences within the Honduran education sector, such as PROHECO– a community- based education program financed by the World Bank (WB). This paper outlines how the education sector can build upon the foundation laid by PROHECO and other countries’ experiences to foster a more productive educational system driven by demand. Properly establishing these reforms with the transparency that comes with more public information will increase checks and balances between citizens, communities, and policy makers for a higher quality education in Honduras. C OUNTRY C ONTEXT AND S TATE OF E DUCATION S ECTOR IN H ONDURAS Honduras is a lower middle-income country with a per capita income of U.S. $1,190 and a population of 7.5 million (INE 2007). It stands out, historically, as one of the slowest-growing and poorest countries in Latin America. Honduras’ mixed poverty-reduction performance has called into question the Poverty Reduction Strategy’s (PRS) effectiveness: 60.2 into question the Poverty Reduction Strategy’s (PRS) effectiveness: 60....
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This note was uploaded on 02/01/2012 for the course POLS 494 taught by Professor Garymoncrief during the Fall '11 term at Boise State.
- Fall '11