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U.S., France to aid Burmese universities

Burmese universities in Rangoon, Mandalay and Pathein will cooperate with universities in the United States and France to upgrade their education programs.

Entrance sign to Yangon University from University Avenue Photo: Rockrangoon / Wikipedia Yangon University will cooperate with Johns Hopkins University of the U.S. to enhance its law and political science programs; Mandalay University will receive aid from the University of Lyons 2 and University Montpellier 2 in France; Pathein University will receive aid from University Montpellier 2, a domestic newspaper reported.

Pathein University will receive training aid in bioscience research.

Also on the education front, the Asia Foundation, a non-governmental organization, has also offered to provide necessary books and documents, and to support the online library system in Burma, reports said last week.

Official statistics show that the number of state-operated basic education schools in Burma has increased to 41,000 and more than 8.1 million students are pursuing education under the guidance of over 270,000 teachers.

In the higher education sector, there are 161 universities and colleges in operation around the country.

In May, Mizzima reported on an “Open Letter” the Burmese president’s economic adviser, Myint, who uses one name, released on the Internet calling for an upgrade of Rangoon University to restore it to its former excellence.
Critics say that Rangoon University, once the country’s most prestigious education institution, and Burma’s overall education system, have been allowed to deteriorate partly because of the former junta’s distrust and fear of students’ opinions.
The presidential advisers’ group, with whom Myint works, held a press conference saying Myint’s comments about education did not represent the government’s view.

In other aid, India has agreed to open an Internet technology university at the location of the Institute of Development of Nationalities in Sagaing in 2013.

The standards at all levels of education in Burma are only one of a multitude of problems the government must cope with in its efforts to reform and modernize the country.
Last Updated ( Friday, 15 June 2012 14:06 )  

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