Kudus, C Java - The Kudus district administration has set aside Rp35.4 billion to improve the infrastructure of 169 schools that incurred damage in the district area, Joko Susilo, the district government’s Education, Youth, and Sports Office head, stated.
Some 80 percent of the damaged educational institutions are elementary schools, while the remaining 20 percent are junior high schools, he informed journalists in Kudus, Central Java, on Thursday.
Improving educational infrastructure was part of the Kudus district administration’s efforts to offer conducive conditions for local teachers and students in classrooms.
Thus, teaching and learning processes in Kudus can run well, and good quality of education could be achieved, he noted.
The central government has vowed to focus on improving the quality of Indonesia's human resources in the midst of stiff competition among nations in this digital era.
The central government’s commitment is apparent from President Joko Widodo's (Jokowi's) statement on the bill on the state budget for the 2020 fiscal year and its financial note that he delivered at the House of Representatives’ (DPR’s) plenary session on Aug 16, 2019.
Jokowi expressed belief that by improving the quality of human resources, Indonesia will be able to realize its vision of becoming a developed nation.
"Through such determination, the 2020 fiscal policy is drawn up on the theme of 'A State Budget to Accelerate Competitiveness through Innovation and Improved Quality of Human Resources,'" he told members of parliament at that time.
To realize Jokowi's noble ambition is indubitably no easy task since Indonesia is still struggling to tackle the problem of stunted growth among children, and the quality of its human resources also varies.
As the world's fourth most populous country, Indonesia has yet to rank on the list of the world's most literate nations.
John W. Miller's study (CCSU, 2016) demonstrates that Finland, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States, Germany, Latvia, and the Netherlands are the top 10 most literate nations.
The study conducted by Miller, a noted researcher at the Central Connecticut State University, further revealed that Indonesia had ranked 60th out of the 61 countries. Its ranking was just better than that of Botswana though lagging far left behind Singapore that ranked 36th and Malaysia, at 53rd position.
His study synthesized "literacy achievement tests (Progress in International Reading Literacy Study and Programme for International Student Assessment) and literate behavior characteristics (population, newspapers, libraries, years of schooling)" (2016).
Miller stated that a nation's literate behaviors contribute to its success and failure in dealing with the demands of the world's knowledge-based economics.
In terms of the quality of higher education, Indonesia also seems to lag far behind Singapore, whose leading universities have garnered esteemed positions of best universities at both the regional and international levels as compared to those of Indonesia. (ANTARA)