Kompas, page 11
The government is requested not to be complacent with the Net Enrollment Rate (NER) of primary school (SD) which reached over 90 percent. The achievement is less meaningful because in fact there are still many primary school students who drop out of school and do not continue their education to junior high school (SMP). Education expert and education evaluation researcher Elin Driana said that the serious problem in education is the higher the education level the more difficult for underprivileged citizens to enjoy. According to her, based on the National Social Economic Survey, the higher the education level, the more difficult it is to be accessed by the poor.
Junior high school (SMP) and high school (SMA) and equivalents, are generally located in the center of the sub-district and regency/city. Students who live in remote areas do not have transportation money to go to school. There are also students who cannot afford to pay tuition. This condition prompts the school dropout rate to be quite great and many children do not continue education to higher levels.
Elin added several areas/regions have few state schools, while private schools charge fees considered burdensome. Therefore, instead of sending children to school, parents choose to save expenses and send children to work.
Meanwhile, Chairperson of Smart Indonesia Movement or Gerakan Indonesia Pintar Yanti Sriyulianti emphasized the importance of improving children’s and parents’ literacy. Good literacy level would make people understand the benefits of education. The majority of people merely associate skills with technical matters. By failing to provide technical provisions, the formal education system is considered not teaching skills. When actually, skills include among others, the ability of people to live in society and the state, as well as be in compliance with rules.