Please Note - In June 2009 Professor James Tooley will be delivering the Eighteenth Annual IEA Hayek Memorial Lecture which will be on the issues raised by 'The Beautiful Tree'.
Everyone from Bono to UNESCO is looking for a silver bullet to bring schooling within reach of the poorest children on Earth. James Tooley may have found one.
While researching private schools in India for the World Bank, and worrying that he was doing little to help the poor, Professor Tooley wandered into the slums of Hyderabad’s Old City. Shocked to find it overflowing with small, parent-funded schools, he set out to discover if they could help achieve universal education. So began the adventure lyrically told in The Beautiful Tree , the story of Tooley’s travels from the largest shanty town in Africa to the mountains of Gansu, China, and of the children, parents, teachers and entrepreneurs who taught him that the poor are not waiting for educational handouts. They are building their own schools and learning to save themselves.
Named after Mahatma Gandhi’s phrase for the schools of pre-colonial India, The Beautiful Tree is not another book lamenting what has gone wr