theodp writes "Passed in 2009, India's Right to Education Act mandates that private schools set aside 25% of admissions for low-income, underprivileged and disabled students. Many of the world's top private schools offer scholarships to smart poor kids, but India's plan is more sweeping in that the rules prohibit admission-testing of students. 'Over the years schooling offered by these two systems [public and private] has become increasingly disparate and unequal,' explained Anshu Vaish of the Dept. of Human Resource Development. But the most notable results of the experiment thus far, reports the WSJ, are frustration and disappointment as separations that define Indian society are upended, leading even some supporters to conclude that the chasm between the top and bottom of Indian society is too great to overcome. Hey, at least we don't have these kinds of problems in the US, right? BTW, about 30% of this year's Intel Science Talent Search 2011 Finalists hailed from private schools, where annual tuition ranges from $15,750 at Ursuline Academy (the alma mater of Melinda Gates) to $37,020 at Groton School (the alma mater of FDR). Some 10% of all elementary and secondary school students were in private schools in 2009-2010, according to the US Dept. of Education."
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