In China, the ‘tidal wave’ of rural migrant workers has created unique challenges for the government, one being migrant children’s education in cities.
Despite central policies emphasising the roles of receiving governments and public schools in providing compulsory education for these children, many migrant children in Beijing still attend privately run, often unlicensed migrant schools. Though migrant children’s education is attracting increasing government and societal attention, questions concerning the extent to which this decentralisation of responsibilities has created space for civil society in the policy process remain unexplored.
This article examines the role of the civil society actors involved and draws on qualitative interviews and the author’s fieldwork experience to show that their limited capacity to significantly impact the situations of these schools is shaped by a lack of state–civil society interaction, as well as limited collaboration between key civil society actors and low levels of interaction amongst the schools themselves.
This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 45.2-3 (2014) State‐Dominated Civil Society and Migrant Children’s Education in Beijing