Campaigners say government must stop funding failing private schools abroad

Ministers must stop funding failing private schools in Africa, anti-poverty campaigners told International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt today. The Morning Star reports.

Writing on behalf of civil society groups in Kenya, Uganda and Liberia, Global Justice Now said the bankrolling of private chain Bridge International Academies exposed the fundamental flaws in the Tories’ approach to international aid.

Bridge has received more than £20 million in direct and indirect funding from Britain, cash that campaigners say should be used for free, quality education for the world’s poorest children.

Global Justice Now warns that Bridge’s 500 schools in India, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria and Uganda have been criticised for their poor teaching methods, such as the use of scripted lessons read out by unqualified teachers from electronic tablets.

It cites failure to meet minimum educational standards, poor working conditions, concerns about freedom of expression and lack of transparency and an absence of valid evidence of Bridge’s positive impact as reasons to hold back the cash.

Global Justice Now aid campaigner Ed Lewis said: “How on Earth did we get to a point where our aid spending has funded schools which two African countries are trying to shut down, and which have been criticised by UN human rights bodies?”

Read more Campaigners say government must stop funding failing private schools abroad

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