Governance of government middle schools in urban China and India : Comparative analysis of supportive accountability and teacher perceptions

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Effective governance that ensures proper management and utilization of various resources is increasingly emphasized as a key to achieving quality and inclusiveness in the basic education sector. This chapter contributes to the understanding of education governance in urban settings of two of the largest – yet still relatively under-explored – public education systems in the world, namely China and India, with a particular focus on their arrangement of teachers’ in-service training and career advancement as supportive accountability mechanisms. While in rural areas and less advanced regions the main priority may still lie with ensuring adequate resources, in urban areas issues of governance and accountability are more relevant and urgent: better resources and capacity levels make it imperative that their effective management and utilization be guaranteed so as to achieve desirable education outcomes. Government middle schools in the two capital cities thus serve as good starting points from which to meaningfully explore the role of supportive accountability practices.

Using a unique teacher survey as its main tool of exploration, this chapter reveals that Beijing’s frequent “low-stake” training centered at the school level, as well as a horizontal career advancement path, are more likely to match stakeholder incentives and promote professionalism compared to measures undertaken in Delhi. While a deeper understanding of how and to what extent this affects education outcomes still awaits further research, insights generated by this chapter can nevertheless shed some preliminary light on the role of supportive mechanisms as essential complements to the more traditional accountability measures of discipline and control.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGoverning Cities: Asia's Urban Transformation
EditorsKris HARTLEY, Glen KUECKER, Michael WASCHAK, Jun Jie WOO, Charles Chao Rong PHUA
Place of PublicationOxon
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9780429439940
ISBN (Print)9781138341883
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameRoutledge Advances in Regional Economics, Science and Policy


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