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Early Childhood Education Lagging in Indonesia

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Data from Statistics Indonesia (BPS) shows that only 36.4% of children across Indonesia attended pre-primary schools last year, a slight increase from 35.3% in 2022.

This puts Indonesia far behind the regional average. UNICEF data suggests that in East and Southeast Asia in 2022, an average of 80% of children were enrolled in pre-primary schools one year before the official primary school age.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s administration is putting more effort into developing early childhood care and education (ECCE) because Indonesia has agreed to develop affordable, accessible, and high-quality early education.

The Indonesian government is still too reliant on the private sector to operate ECCE, as only around 4% of pre-primary schools are state-owned, according to a Center for Education and Policy Studies (PSPK) report. This has made tuition more expensive, exacerbating the difference in enrollment rates between children from wealthier and poorer families.

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