Burma Private Education Law
The Ministry of Education implemented the new Private Education Law 2023 on 12 May 2023, thereby nullifying and substituting the prior Private School Registration Law 2011.
The recently enacted Private Education Law of 2023 stipulates those private institutions offering primary, secondary, and tertiary education as well as those providing, technical and vocational education and training, are required to register with a new central registration body.
Individuals who wish to establish an independent or private school are required to submit an application for registration to the recently established Regional Supervisory Boards. After receiving approval, the registration will remain valid for a duration of five years. Schools that were established prior to the implementation of the new Private Education Law are required to undergo the process of re-registration within a period of one year from the date of the law’s enactment. Non-compliance with the recently implemented registration prerequisites is regarded as a transgression, subject to potential penalties of a maximum monetary fine of MMK 50 million and/or a maximum custodial sentence of two years.
In addition, it is required for registered private schools to annually submit reports to the corresponding Regional Supervisory Board. The precise contents and structure of the annual report have not yet been established, and additional details are anticipated to be disclosed in the implementing regulations.
In order to comply with regulations, Myanmar citizens and foreign individuals who aspire to work as private school teachers are obligated to complete the registration process with the appropriate Supervisory Board. The validity period of a registration certificate for private school teachers is three years, commencing from the date of issuance. As per the recently enacted legislation on Private Education, private educational institutions are now required to promptly inform the appropriate regional supervisory board within a period of 14 days following the appointment, suspension, or termination of foreign teachers or staff members. Failure to comply with the registration requirement for teachers in private schools can result in a monetary penalty of up to MMK 5 million.
The Private Education Law 2023 brings positive prospects for US universities interested in forming partnerships with educational institutions in Myanmar to offer localized degree programs. Previously, private institutions in Myanmar faced difficulties establishing partnerships with US universities because they were registered as companies under the Myanmar Company Law and could not register as educational institutions due to a lack of specialized accreditations for educational establishments in the country. Nonetheless, the implementation of this private law has the potential to benefit Burmese private institutions that have received legal recognition as educational institutions from the Ministry of Education, as well as to facilitate collaborations between Myanmar institutions and US universities, potentially allowing the establishment of joint degree programs.
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