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Funding and Structure

Compare and contrast urban and rural life.

In recent decades there has been a growing trend for rural to urban migration in many developing countries around the world, and by 2030, over 5 billion people are expected to be living in cities and towns (UNFPA, 2015) as people move in search of employment and a better life for their families. Conversely, in some parts of the developed world an opposite trend can be observed; that is people moving out of urban areas in search of an improved quality of life for themselves and their families. As the pace of change increases, it is important to assess the benefits and challenges of each lifestyle. While it is true that cities offer great diversity in opportunities for education, work and culture, there are drawbacks that go with this, not only lower quality of life, but also environmental factors such as air pollution and higher rates of crime. One of the primary factors drawing people to urban centres is that in comparison to rural areas, they offer great diversity and choice, especially as regards education and employment opportunities. For example, parents have a number of choices available for the education of their children and can often select from a long list of both public and private school districts, which leads to the potential for better education. Furthermore, urban areas offer residents more opportunities and employment options at any number of companies or organizations. As Manning (2008) points out, rural places on the other hand, do not offer the same level of choice. Unlike urban areas, residents here do not have the best opportunity to choose from a range of employment options. While they can commute to larger towns, this becomes expensive and is not as convenient as working close to their home. However, in terms of educational opportunities, whilst there are not as many schools to choose from in rural areas, and sometimes these schools are not funded as well as others, children can grow up knowing their classmates and experience the benefits of smaller classes. Despite this lack of choice, there are a number of positive sides to rural living in terms of quality of life. For instance, living in a rural area allows residents to enjoy the natural world more easily instead of having to go to parks. In addition, people do not have to fight with the daily stresses of urban life such as being stuck in traffic, dealing with higher rates of crime, and in many cases, paying higher taxes. These absences of stressors can have a great effect on the overall quality of life (Combs, 2006). While there may not be a large number of stores and restaurants to choose from, those in rural areas have the benefit of land upon which to grow their own food, which is much healthier. Although urban populations have large numbers of social networks and networking opportunities, rural communities offer residents the ability to have long-lasting and more personal relationships since they encounter the same people more frequently.


Conclusion

The following essay aims at investigating and comparing the funding and the structure of the English primary education system by considering the problems that are related to the continuous changes in the years that follow and also highlights the comparison between England and Australian primary education systems. However it is believed that the two countries are completely different in their natures like for instance a public school in UK is usually owned privately and is very selective and exclusive in nature whereas a public school in Australia is run by the State Government. Therefore to begin with it can be seen that the main logic behind the two education systems are very different in both the countries. In UK the main aim of the education is to learn the facts of life that would help you in the later stages of life whereas in Australia they focus on the teaching to think, learn and adapt by oneself and thus many Australians do not stress on the facts as much as they do on the teachings of independent thinking and the various skills of life (Barr, 2010). There is a lot of difference between the students in UK who have a very rigorous curriculum and also have loads of homework but the Australian students have a lesser rigorous curriculum and also are seen to spend more of their time in carrying out many group and independent researches that are based on many different topics. However both systems are very similar initially in the field of compulsory education and thus many direct comparisons can be made between the two curriculums. The Australian and British systems of education are very similar in the first few years of schooling and have the system of the two cycle which means there is one primary school that is for the is for seven to eight years and one secondary school of five to six years.  Also both have very similar looking school uniforms but however it is when that the students get their leaving certificates that the two systems diverge drastically and quite suddenly (Schleicher, 2010). 

England and Australia are considered to be very strong in terms of its primary education that is provided to them. Children are usually placed in classes with one teacher who will be primarily responsible for their education and welfare for that year. This teacher may be assisted to varying degrees by specialist teachers in certain subject areas, often music or physical education. The continuity with a single teacher and the opportunity to build up a close relationship with the class is a notable feature of the primary education system Chapman, 2011). In studying the flows of the private and public funding in both the countries it is essential to consider if there is a correct balance in the contribution of both the sectors that they main goal is for as it is believed that they are many benefits of the private and public funds in relation to the primary education. However it is widely seen that private rates have received a great deal of attention in both the countries because they justify in their use of the private contribution through different modes of fee payments.

On the other hand the major goals of primary education are achieving basic literacy and numeracy amongst all their students, as well as establishing foundations in science, geography, history and other social sciences. The relative priority of various areas, and the methods used to teach them, are an area of considerable political debate. However compared to Australia, in UK there are many different types of punishment given to the students as an early integral part of primary education (Dynarski, 1994). The roles of the structure of the UK system of primary education covered the appointing and support of the government in relation to being the teacher or employer of the teaching as well as the non- teaching staff. The Governors and principles are responsible for what goes on within the school such as they decide on the use of the school premises, delegation of school budgets; performance target setting in relation to National Curriculum assessments and also pupil discipline. Therefore the two aspects of school structure have attracted more evaluative consideration in England and the other countries in relation to the school size and starting age. The available evidence suggests that neither of these has a strong impact on children’s attainment or progress at school (Hackett, et al (2013).

Therefore in terms of structure it can be seen that the Australian schools usually are run in a more centralized system as compared to the UK system of education. The schools in Australia are mostly funded and run by the Department of Education within each State and therefore all the decisions about the amount of funding each school should receive and also about the staff allocation and its curriculum are all made by the State Government level and then is implemented within each school. However in England the schools are run and funded from a local board level.  Also many students tend to attend their local high schools only after they have made an entry to a selective school as compared to the system in UK (Johnston & Barr, 2013). 

Conclusion:

In conclusion it can be said that there is a comparison of structural features in other countries shows considerable variation in such features as age of starting school, length of the school year, average size of school and length of primary schooling. This diversity may be of potential interest to those wishing to consider alternatives to the prevailing structures in primary education in England as compared to the structure in Australia. Hence in each of these areas both the countries and their approaches are similar yet different enough to be able to be inspected more closely (Norton, 2013). However it is very challenging to identify the influences of the specific structural arrangements that are to be considered in the various factors that highly influence the teaching and learning in primary schools. Thus there are many reasons as to why England would benefit from a closer policy with Australia in terms of growing a sense of cooperation, shared learning and also collaboration between the two countries and their system of primary education. 

References

Barr, N. (2010). Paying for higher education: what policies, in what order? London: Independent Review of Higher Education Funding and Student Finance.

Chapman, B. (2011). The Australian university stduent financing system: the rationale for, and experience with, income-contingent loans. In S. Armstrong, & B. Chapman, Financing higher education and economic development in East Asia (p. Chapter 5). Canberra: Australian National University.

Dynarski, S. (1994). Who defaults on student loans: findings from the national post-secondary student aid study. Economics of Education Review, 55-68.

Hackett, L., Shutt, L., & Maclachlan, N. (2013). The way we'll work: labour market trends and preparing for the hourglass. London: University Alliance.

Institute for Fiscal Studies. (2011). The public expenditure and distributional implications of reforming student loans and grants. London: IFS.

Johnston, A., & Barr, N. (2013). Student loan reform, interest subsidies and costly technicalities: lessons from the UK experience.Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management,167-78.

Norton, A. (2013). Mapping Australian higher education. Melbourne: The Grattan Institute.

Schleicher, A. (2010). Is the sky the limit to educational improvement? UUK Annual Conference, September 2010. Cranfield: OECD and UUK.

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