Education and Literacy Rates in Pakistan

Education is a right, not a privilege, yet in many places some cannot afford to get an education. In Pakistan today there is a 58% illiteracy rate and it has been consistent for the past two years. One of the main issues concerning Pakistan’s high illiteracy rates is its small budged for education coupled with education not being as high of a priority. While the government schools tend to be better quality, public schools in Pakistan tend to be lacking in basic resources such as electricity, water, and sanitation.   In addition there are even several unofficial ghost schools have formed. Many who dislike the conditions of public schools in Pakistan have nowhere to turn because private schools have steeper prices, which many people in Pakistan cannot afford. There is a significant disparity in areas with private schooling and in areas with public. Private schools are pretty much only in urban areas where a lot of the more wealthy people are located, whole public schools are located in rural areas where there are more impoverished people. Madrasas are also prominent. These are schools that provide a more Islamic, religious-based education and they are free, so they are more easily accessible for people who cannot afford to send their children to private school.

Above is an image of a ghost school in the province of Sindh, Pakistan.
Above is an image of a ghost school in the province of Sindh, Pakistan.

One issue that is a common trend in many countries is the high gender disparity in literacy with a significantly smaller literacy rate for females. In fact, in Pakistan the female literacy rate has even declined by 2% from 2012-13 while the male literacy rate has stayed the same. In some more rural, tribal areas in Pakistan women are strictly prohibited from getting an education on religious grounds. With social and cultural restrictions and a patriarchal society, women cannot receive the educations that they deserve. In addition, in poorer areas of Pakistan, often women cannot afford to buy sanitary pads if they have their periods, and therefore end up missing school because of it and sacrificing their educations.

Often people are scared to educate women, because along with education comes power. It gives people the power to question social structures and power dynamics. Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistani woman dedicated to promoting education in Pakistan and ending the gender disparity in education once said, “Let us picks up our books and pencils. They are our most powerful weapons.” Education is a type of power that Pakistani people need in order to enact change.

 

Works Cited

Ahsan, S. (n.d.). Related Articles. Retrieved April 14, 2016, from http://www.ilmkidunya.com/articles/reasons-for-pakistan-s-low-literacy-rate-719.aspx

Haq, R. (2015, June 05). Education woes: Pakistan misses UN target with 58% literacy rate – The Express Tribune. Retrieved April 15, 2016, from http://tribune.com.pk/story/897995/education-woes-pakistan-misses-un-target-with-58-literacy-rate/

Illiteracy in Pakistan. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2016, from http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2011/08/10/comment/illiteracy-in-pakistan-2/

Mussadaq, M. (2011, July 20). Female illiteracy: 41% of Pakistani girls fail to complete primary school – The Express Tribune. Retrieved April 14, 2016, from http://tribune.com.pk/story/213419/female-illiteracy-41-of-pakistani-girls-fail-to-complete-primary-school/

Saleem, M. (n.d.). The Development and State of the Art of Adult Learning. Retrieved April 14, 2016, from http://www.unesco.org/fileadmin/MULTIMEDIA/INSTITUTES/UIL/confintea/pdf/National_Reports/Asia – Pacific/Pakistan.pdf

 

One thought on “Education and Literacy Rates in Pakistan”

  1. Your last statement, “Education is a type of power that Pakistani people need in order to enact change”, attracted me on your post! I guess the free education is the most important key for sustainable development. Thus, your post was very interesting because you have both agued from political perspective and feminism perspective.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*