On July 4, 2019, a seminar was held in Tashkent to complete the project on conducting the research “Barriers to higher education for girls and socially vulnerable groups and Technical assistance in developing and strengthening citizen engagement mechanisms, consulting with stakeholders and collecting feedback from beneficiaries” within the project MHSSE with the assistance of the World Bank "Modernization of higher education in Uzbekistan."
Representatives of MHSSE, the PIU of the World Bank, the Ministry of Employment and Labor Relations, international organizations in the field of promoting higher education, the Women's Committee of Uzbekistan, higher education institutions, the Union of Youth and the Media participated in this seminar.
Reforming the higher education system in Uzbekistan is aimed at achieving a number of goals:
Increasing the number of school, college and lyceum students enrolled in higher education institution;
Strengthening the quality of education and its relevance to the requirements of the labor market;
Bringing the content and teaching methods in line with the requirements of the modern economy and social life;
Achieving a greater degree of equality.
In support of the reform process with the assistance of the World Bank, MHSSE is implementing the project “Modernization of Higher Education in Uzbekistan” within the framework of which this research is carried out by the international consulting company RB Asia.
"The research is based on data obtained from a quantitative and qualitative survey conducted among more than 2200 respondents in 7 regions of Uzbekistan" - commented the research methodology Doniyor Islamov, Managing Director of RB ASIA.
Graduates of schools, colleges and lyceums, as well as first-year students of higher educational institutions, parents and members of local communities, as well as experts, representatives of state and international organizations working with children, young people, as well as low-income people and people with disabilities took part in the survey.
The research focused on clarifying the peculiarities of influence on the possibilities of obtaining higher education of a number of different factors - economic, legal, social, cultural and gender, and the peculiarities of their influence on the choice and the possibility of exercising the right to education for vulnerable groups of the population, in particular girls, low-income groups and persons with disabilities.
According to the study, the most significant barriers are 1) financial and economic 2) distance to the place of study 3) quality of the previous stage of education 4) lack of necessary conditions for the education of children with disabilities
Based on the obtained initial survey data and secondary data of state and departmental statistics, recommendations were developed concerning
The alleviation and rationalization of the financial burden for families on higher education costs;
Improving the quality of school education and preparation for university entrance;
Expansion of quotas for admission and diversity of specialties in the regions;
Improving information support for students in schools, colleges and lyceums, especially in rural and remote areas;
Carrying out large-scale public works to promote higher education, especially for girls;
Improving the regulatory framework and the implementation of measures to create and support an inclusive environment for persons with disabilities from pre-school and school education and ending with universities and institutions of continuing education.
Based on the obtained data, a number of indices have been developed, which can be used to monitor the success of the measures implementation aimed at increasing access to and realization of educational rights for vulnerable groups of the population, especially for children from low-income families and remote areas, girls and individuals with a disability.