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robertogreco : centralasiainstitute   2

News Desk: What Mortenson Got Wrong : The New Yorker
"Rajeev paused for a moment. “It seemed to be mostly about the author, about everything he accomplished. And that story is about quantity, about the number of schools built.” Rajeev said his own work had convinced him that construction projects are overvalued, & sometimes can even have a negative impact on a community. People might become dependant on outsiders, & corruption can become a problem. Building materials & methods may be inappropriate, especially if money comes from far away & there’s little oversight. Foreign-funded structures have a tendency to overuse cement…can change local construction patterns in environmentally damaging ways…Rajeev believed that teacher training & other cultural factors often have more value. “A good teacher sitting under a tree can do more than a bad teacher in a new building. That’s why I don’t want to do school construction anymore. It might have been a mistake. It’s a good instinct, as you want to help, but maybe it’s not the best thing.”"
gregmortenson  centralasiainstitute  peterhessler  rajeevgoyal  building  schools  education  philanthropy  designimperialism  teaching  learning  imperialism  threecupsoftea  insteadofbuilding  environment  wastedenergy  wastedmoney  self-esteem  self-aggrandizement  humility  whoisitfor?  schooldesign  unschooling  deschooling  purpose  motivation  corruption  foreignpolicy  foreignaid  culturalimperialism  charitableindustrialcomplex  philanthropicindustrialcomplex  capitalism  power  control 
april 2011 by robertogreco
Three Cups of BS - By Alanna Shaikh | Foreign Policy
"While much of uproar has been over lies Mortenson peddled, I can't help wondering: Why, exactly, did we ever think his model for education, exemplified in Central Asia Institute, was going to work? Its focus was on building schools—that's it. Not a thought was spared for education quality, access, or sustainability. But building schools has never been the answer to improving education. If it were, then the millions of dollars poured into international education over last half-century would have already solved Afghanistan's—and the rest of the world's—education deficit by now.

Over last 50yrs of studying international development, scholars have built large body of research & theory on how to improve education in developing world. None of it has recommended providing more school buildings, because according to decades of research, buildings aren't what matter. Teachers matter. Curriculum matters. Funding for education matters. Where classes actually take place? Not really."
gregmortenson  schooldesign  developingworld  education  policy  teaching  curriculum  whatmatters  funding  CAI  centralasiainstitute  sustainability  accessibility  international  global  buildings  2011  toldyaso  missedopportunities  tcsnmy  lcproject  pop-upeducation  schools  schooling 
april 2011 by robertogreco

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