ING to difficulties of language and race, educational progress in Burma has not been rapid; it has been gradual and has proceeded along well-defined lines, the benefits of which are being witnessed to-day in the wider diffusion of knowledge and the increased desire for learning. Not so very long ago it was considered that the ends of education in this, as in other provinces, were amply served by the many religious missionary agencies, but this view is not now held, and the Government has very properly conceived it to be its duty to undertake this work as a necessary and essential element in the organic life of the state. Church schools and private seminaries are gradually giving place to Government schools and colleges, and though in recent years much has been done to increase the efficiency of the education system, much more remains to be done. This duty is fully recognised by the State Education Department, who may be trusted in the future to pursue such a policy of progression, in initiating from time to time new and accredited schemes, as will equip the youth under its care with the best possible education and enable them to maintain and increase the prosperity of their young though vigorously expanding province.
Administrative Authorities.aThe different agencies administering education in Burma may be classified as follows :a
(i.) The Education Department.
(ii.) District officers and their assistants, (iii.) Municipal authorities.
(iv.) The Educational Syndicate.
(v.) The University of Calcutta.
(vi.) Private agencies.
All are subject to the Government, and the chief of the Education Department is called the Director of Public Instruction. Under him are all the officers of the Government whose duties comprise educational administration, inspection, or instruction.
District officers and their assistants include commissioners and deputy commissioners, who co-operate with inspectors, give advice to the Education Department, visit the schools, appoint in Upper Burma village school committees, and generally supervise the educational sections of District Councils and municipal budgets.
The municipal authorities are subject to the
general supervision of the department. They possess a considerable number of schools (Anglo-vernacular), and in all cases contribute to the support of aided schools. Their administration is usually carried on through a school committee, and for inspection and examination they rely on the Education Department.
The Educational Syndicate existed prior to the establishment of the Education Department, to whom it has relinquished many of its former
functions, including the management and control of the Rangoon College and the Collegiate High School. At the outset, the management of the Rangoon College was vested in the Syndicate, but in 1904 it was transferred to the direct control of the Government. The Syndicate has done a great deal of the pioneer work in education and still conducts examinations for various
posts under Government, and to advise on all educational measures.
With the University of Calcutta are affiliated, under the orders of the Government, the colleges and high schools in Burma, and its regulations accordingly affect and materially determine the character of the different curricula taught in those establishments.
Among the private agencies are included missionary bodies, which not only maintain a large number of schools (vernacular and
AMERICAN BAPTIST COLLEGE, RANGOON. 'AMERICAN BAPTIST COLLEGE, RANGOON. '