From India's Unique ID Authority Chairman's interview:
- "We are not doing something different from what already exists."
- "Having this number does not confer any rights, benefits or any entitlements. All it does is confirming that X is X."
- "We will have to design it as good as possible."
- "It is not a reinvention but scaling up."
I know it is apples and oranges, but compare the above handwaving to this news item that came out of China (take it for what it is worth):
China’s nine-year compulsory education policy had made great achievements in recent years, covering more than 160 million primary and middle school students so far in both rural and urban areas, said Education Minister Zhou Ji at a news conference here recently.
Last year, the enrolment percentage in both the 3, 00,900 primary schools and 57,900 middle schools across the country reached 98 per cent, said Mr. Zhou. The government also spent tens of billions of yuan over the past several years to establish more than 8,000 boarding schools nationwide, rebuild dangerous buildings and improve living conditions in schools, he said.
China’s nine-year compulsory education policy, which was launched in 1986, enables students over six years of age nationwide to have free education at both primary and secondary schools.
Mr. Zhou also stressed the importance of shortening the gap between urban and rural areas in terms of teachers’ quality by improving rural teachers’ economic and social status.
The government has released a wage reform ensuring that payment of rural teachers are not lower than that of local civil servants. Further, the government issued many preferential policies to encourage teachers, college graduates and school students to go to the countryside to teach. This year, more than 2, 00,000 college graduates have done so.
As for development of vocational education, which is considered as an important task for China’s education development, Mr. Zhou said there would be free access to secondary vocational education this year in order to better promote its development. The policy would be primarily implemented in agriculture related majors and for poor students, said Mr. Zhou.
He did not reveal the exact time for the policy to take effect. He said the scale of secondary vocational school development was now equal to that of high schools, with student enrolment numbers higher than high school. Last year, the enrolment number in secondary vocational schools reached 8.1 million, and the number might be 8.6 million for this year, he said.