Universities call for greater autonomy

The higher education law that was recently released is being criticised by students and teachers for not giving universities in Myanmar the autonomy they require to increase efficiency and competitiveness, although some improvements are under way, writes Ei Shwe Phyu for Myanmar Times.

The University Acts of Yangon and Mandalay universities allowed them to remain independent until the acts were revoked after General Ne Win took power in 1962. Following this decision, university councils were formed to manage higher education, which led to the emergence of the Department of Higher Education. While the department manages universities, the national education law from the Ministry of Education, which was adopted in 2014 and amended in 2015, pledged there would be more autonomy for universities.

However, the continued lack of autonomy led to the deterioration of Myanmar’s universities, as they were constrained by rules and regulations overseen by the Department of Higher Education, said U Zaw Myo Hlaing, a physics lecturer at West Yangon University. “The Department of Higher Education is laying down an intransigent policy. We are working under this strict policy and cannot carry out changes if they are not in line with the policy. This has held back the education sector,” he said.
Full report on the Myanmar Times site