Privatization of Higher Education and Excellence Without Soul
Keywords:privatization, higher education, excellence with soul
Privatization of education in both developed and developing countries over the last century has registered a positive trend in the field of education. With the rise of capitalism and privatization of higher education by the government of Uganda, there is an increasing attempt to privatize public services, including education, so that citizens will have to buy them at market value rather than have them provided by the government. The department of higher education in Uganda concentrates strongly on the role of education in servicing the economy through taxation to the neglect of its social and developmental responsibilities. The vision of the university as a place for the education of the elite and for elite education has had a powerful historical precedent in Plato’s Academy. To what extent the Platonic view of education still dominates our thinking about the role and purposes of universities is arguable. Commercialization is normalized and its operational values and purposes have been encoded in the systems of all types of universities. Correlatively, what is happening in the universities is that they are being asked to produce commercially oriented professionals rather than public-interest professionals. While this may seem like merely a change in form rather than substance, the danger with this advancing marketised individualism is that it will further weaken public interest values among those who are being educated in private universities. In this paper, the writer presents an examination on the impact of privatization of higher education on the original purpose and values of education to the individual, the society and the Ugandan nation as a whole hence promoting privatization of higher education and excellence without soul.
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