Education in Indonesia is primarily the responsibility of the Ministry of National Education of Indonesia. According to the Indonesian Constitution, all citizens must undertake nine years of compulsory education, six years at elementary level and three in junior high school. The constitution also notes that education in Indonesia is divided into two major parts, formal and non-formal.
Since its independence in 1945, The Government of Indonesia has steadily made efforts to improve and expand its education system. Over the years, significant efforts have been made to develop all levels of formal education in Indonesia, from elementary to university education.
The extent to which a nation has achieved success in improving its education is a barometer for measuring its development. Education in Indonesia lags far behind many other countries. The slow progress in the education sector in Indonesia is reflected in the Human Development Index report 2007, which ranked Indonesia number 107 with a score of 0.728. The Human Development Index is an indicator that measures a nation's quality of life, access to proper education, life expectancy, living standards and the level of literacy.
Education is essential to development. It opens doors to all and helps people to lift themselves out of poverty. It empowers people and is a powerful “equalizer”. The best and only way to produce qualified human resources is the provision of a flawless education system.
Indonesia has made significant developments in education in the last 10 years in terms of quantity. However, in terms of quality, not much advancement has been made. Educational institutions do not have consistent quality across the board. Only institutions that charge high tuition fees can provide high quality teaching and learning systems. As a result, they are able to attract only the upper class students. Less financially viable institutions cannot compete.
To improve the quality of education in Indonesia, the Government is making efforts to:
Donations to charity made by ordinary people help make an extraordinary difference to the students in Indonesia, providing them with resources that we in developed countries take for granted.