Regulating education: Ambiguous and controversial

What do we mean when we talk about regulating education? Three leading scholars and policy-makers in the field of education tried to answer the question in a roundtable held on January 3 at GPTT’s Dr. Roosta-Azad Hall. Dr. Rezvan Hakimzadeh, associate professor of educational planning and former deputy of Iranian minister of education pointed out the relatively short history of governments’ involvement in education and referred to regulation as a middle-way between total control and complete abandonment of education by governments. According to her, among three aspects of educational content, human resources, and budget governments in Iran tend to totally control the first two and evade the burden of the third, while it should pursue the exact opposite route. Another panelist, Dr. Abbas Abbaspoor, professor of management called regulation of education “ambiguous and controversial” and identified the government as the “indisputable actor” in regulating the education in Iran. He referred to the strategy, the structure, the process, and the incentives as the main obstacles in regulating the education in Iran that should be overcome. Finally, the deputy of the science and technology department of the Iranian Supreme Council of Cultural Revolution, Dr. Gholamreza Salimi emphasized that first, there is a need for a “educational development theory,” and then, the government in participation with Iranian private sector and civil society would be able to effectively govern the education in Iran.

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