19% children are still out of schools: report

19% children   are still out of   schools: report

ISLAMABAD: As many as 19 percent children of the country are still out of school, revealed the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2016 launched on Wednesday.

The report was compiled by Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA) with joint cooperation of the National Commission for Human Status (NHCD) and some other key autonomous organisations. The report said that the 19 percent out-of-school children were aged between six and 16 years, while the remaining 81 percent enrolled are not learning much either.

While conducting the survey for the report, 10,000 volunteers hired by these organisations visited 144 districts, while 4,205 villages based the ASER findings. The information was gathered from 83,324 households and 25,569 children aged between three and 16 years.

It also assessed 216,365 children of 5 to 16 years of age cohort in different languages of the country.

The report says that the proportion of out-of-school children is still the same as compared to 2015.

“This is unfortunate as the SDG 4 goal and targets have been fully endorsed by the government of Pakistan and its provinces/areas are committed to aligning their sector plans to the promise made both for SDG 4 (12 years of schooling) and Article 25 A (the right to education of 5-16 year olds).”

The ASER report shows that a considerable number of children were going to non-state schools, as 26 percent children of age 6-16 years are enrolled in private sectors of the education in the said year, while in 2015 the percentage was 24 percent. Only Punjab and ICT registered a positive shift in enrolment into public sector schools, while in KP and Sindh the share remains the same as 2015.

From 2014, when ECE enrolment was recorded at 39 percent, it declined to 37 percent in 2015 instead of increasing and in 2016 it stood at 36 percent in the rural areas of Pakistan, the report states. Overall, government schools have witnessed a reduction of 7.5 percent – that is 63 percent of enrolment for ECE – whereas the private sector holds 37 percent of the total enrolment.

The ASER report highlights that the boys are outperforming girls in literacy and numeracy skills. As many as 43 percent of boys were able to at least read sentences in Urdu and Pasto as compare to 36 percent girls.

It also states that the overall teacher attendance in surveyed government schools stood at 87 percent, whereas it was 92 percent in surveyed private schools.

The trend of multi-grade teaching across schools also remained mix. According to the report, 44 percent of surveyed government schools and 29 percent of surveyed private schools had Class 2 students sitting with other classes.

Pakistani students: Meanwhile, two Pakistani students have received First Class Award from University of London by securing top positions in International Programmes Examinations worldwide. Both the students belong to School of International Law (SIL) Islamabad.

According to details, SIL has announced that two of its final year LLB (honours) students topped their University of London International Programmes Examinations worldwide amongst 15 high achievers. Studying for the prestigious distance-learning programme, Mr Shayan Ahmed and Ms Sakeena Moeen have both received the First Class Award from the University of London. The award is given to selected students based on their high marks and overall performance in the LLB (honours) programme.

“We are extremely proud of our students,” said Principal Nida Tareen. “This is the second time that SIL students have achieved not one but two such awards at the same time. Previously, in 2015, two of our students achieved the same results. This year history has repeated itself, fortunately. Our hardworking students and devoted faculty members’ efforts have paid off thankfully. This is a proud moment for the nation. Pakistani students have proven once again to the world that they can excel in any field that they set their sights on!”



Published in Daily Times, August 3nd 2017.