Funding models for distance education

  1. Skim through Mays & Singh (2020) in the same resource you accessed in Unit One, to gain insights on how open schooling is funded in some contexts.
  2. What are the funding models for distance education in your context?
  3. How do they compare with what is given in the chapter you have just read?
  4. Click on Reply below to post your answer in the discussion forum.

In Kiribati, I cannot really say positively about a funding model in distance education. This is because this form of education is not yet formally introduced in the school system. But I see that the funding models being discussed by Mays & Singh (2020) is kind of a mix of funding model that is currently used by the Kiribati Government to fund the conventional face-face schooling.

There is no funding models for distance education in Nauru set by the government. Since we have USP Campus in Nauru, each department is responsible for sponsoring their own workers for upskilling and so forth.
For example: The Department of Education sponsor their trainees to enroll in ECE program etc.
Some students are self-funded.
There is no special funds set aside by the Government to cater for ODFL.

The funding models for distance education in our context are;

  • Government/Paid School Fees
  • Donations from Non-Governmental Organizations

The Principles of the above funding models are very similar to those of Normal Budget Negotiations and Budgetary Framework Document

The Chapter 6 of Mays & Singh (2020) noted that “a one-size-fits-all approach to funding is not possible”. Hence, different countries decide which method of funding is best for their context. The chapter identified “feasibility” and “sustainability” as key parameters for determination of a funding model, as long as the model “improve efficiency, enhance quality and ensure ultimately positive student learning outcomes.”

  1. Government subventions
  2. Tuition fees
  3. Other revenue streams
  4. Study grants and loans
  5. Use of philanthropy
  6. Sales of learning materials

Available funding models for distance education in Nigeria include the following:

  1. Government
  2. Tuition fees
  3. Local and international organizations support.
  4. Corporate sponsorship
  5. Philanthropic funding
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As you plan your distance education system (which I hope you aspire to do), I am sure you will find some of the funding models in Mays & Singh’s work useful.

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Yes, I loved the idea of introducing the distance education system in Kiribati. The funding models in Mays & Singh’s work are useful to understand and to use in an open school here in Kiribati.

Chapter 6 of May and Sing Article noted that there is no way funding for education. The methods or ways of funding greatly determined by the ecology of different Countries.

Some of the funding available to distance learning in my context are as follows.

  1. Tuition fees from Students
  2. Administrative charges for facilities on campus
  3. Donations from reputable Organizations
  4. Government funding etc

In my country (Nigeria), it will be a very good idea to introduce OL schools because it will attract many out of school learners whose happened to be victims of circumstances.
The government doesn’t need to create another structure, instead it can just utilize relevant part of the existing structures in the conventional schools.
The funding should be looked in the following ways:
From the government it self
Selling of the learning facilities
Government/Local scholarships
Funding from the community and some private organizations
Intrepreneur and skill acquisition

Models used in my country seems to be funding through collaboration with MOE (Ministry of Education) in the country.
Since this method is not prevalent and face to face is still the main form of education.
Ways of funding besides Government are through students tuition fees, fund raising, grants, scholarships and international commitments and agreements with international agencies.
We recognize that since the funding will include a student fee, many underprivileged students or adults who did complete Secondary education may not have an opportunity to access this flexible means of studying and their education may be affected.
But Government did introduce - scholarships and grants to help students with meeting the requirements to continue to further their educational goals.
Since many students whose family have financial issues, they are required to find jobs to help out financially, so this flexible way of education will be welcomed by some of these students who can go to school when they have the time.
So, it is encouraged to have models like these to encourage students like these.

Distance learning program has just started in my institution and I am not such of the funding model been used. Although I have read about budget negotiations and funding formula

Politicians and negotiators who are involved in specified agendas in a country can influence how things get done and are pushed forward. Many international loans are taken to improvement certain areas in education which are based on what the external party wanted to achieved and are highly invested intimately to get the results they want to see.
Many negotiations are done behind closed doors for funding and only when issues arise then some of the funding agreements specifications are highlighted in public.

Self-funding: students pay the full cost of their education, This model is commonly used by private universities and colleges offering online courses.

Public funding: the government provides financial support for distance education programs.

Corporate funding: Some distance education programs are funded by private corporations or foundations that are interested in supporting education and workforce development.

Grants and contracts: Distance education programs can also be funded through grants and contracts from public or private organizations.
Donations and endowments: Finally, some distance education programs are supported by donations and endowments from individuals or organizations.

They are all similar with ones i had read

True , This happens in our country.

Funding for distance education in Fiji include government funding, donor support, tuition fees, private sector partnerships, grants from international organizations, and revenue generated from distance education program activities.

the funding in our country are almost the same as the one discussed. these includes Funding from governments, Tuition Fees, Selling of Educational Materials, Grant and Donors funding and many others.

In my context as a public university we fall in line with what was stated especially with a heavy dependence on government funding. This is a challenge because the funding has not kept pace with the needs and implementing a huge increase in student fees is illogical given our economic climate. As such we are in significant arrears. There is a push now to increase third stream income and boost student numbers which of course require significant effort on the part of the various stakeholders.

  • Normal budgeting negotiation where the budgets are prepared by various sectors. After which they are subjected to negotiation at the parliament.
  • The funding formula approach : This is where there is an established formula of calculating to ascertain how much each institution should be awarded basing on various aspects such as the student population, the number of employees.
  • Service-level agreement : This involves having a contract signed between the funding organization and the client. This agreement will have sections showing responsibilities for each partner well stipulated. The document is then taken to the state council to read and give their opinion and way forward. Once the document is signed by both parties, then is binding hence operational.

The above-mentioned models are not really different from the earlier discussed models. The only difference is the structure of the model but in principle they are the same.

@ C-Right, I appreciate the point on money received from charging conference facilities of the administration, which I had not mentioned in my post. Thank you.

Study grants
Government support
school fees