Even with the increase in the level of education spending in 2015-2016, Pakistan’s budget for educating her people are pathetically low in the South Asia region.
This was the main observation behind the report, ‘Public Financing of Education in Pakistan and Agenda for Education Budget 2016-17’, which was launched by the Institute of Social and Policy Sciences (I-SAPS).
Details of Education Expenditure in Pakistan
According to the aforementioned report:
Pakistan has a literacy rate of 58pc, which has improved from 35pc in 1990-91, but still way behind the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) target of 88pc, which was to be achieved by the end of 2015. – I-SAPS Report
The state of education spending and literacy has improved over the last past years. However, at the provincial level, there exists vast disparities in education statistics.
Pakistan is home to 24 million children who are out of school, a figure that is second only to Nigeria’s.
The launch of the report was also attended by eminent educationists as well as the Minister of State for Federal Education and Professional Training Mohammad Balighur Rehman.
Mr. Rehman spoke about the fact that given the increase in education budget over the past three years, there was still a lot to be done to uplift communities and children via better education.
I-SAPS executive director Salman Humayun also pointed to some encouraging signs in the report:
It is heartening to see a visible increase in education budgets for all the provinces in 2015-16, with Balochistan registering an increase of 19pc, followed by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with 12pc, Punjab with 10pc and Sindh with an increased allocation of 7pc, compared with the previous year’s budgets. – Salman Humayun, I-SAPS
Furthermore, he added that the utilization of funds for education sector must be done better. There was a need to address key challenges such as access and quality of education with these budgetary allocations. He blamed corruption, huge administrative expenditure, lack of transparency, untimely fiscal flow as some of the factors hampering the growth of education in Pakistan.
Data for Provinces was also unveiled in the report.
Here are some statistics that paint a picture of the state of education in Sindh:
- Number of schools: 46,039
- Primary schools: 91%
- Middle schools: 4%
- Elementary schools: 1%
- Higher secondary schools: 1%
- Enrollment in govt schools: 4.04 million
- Primary school enrollment: 65%
- Literacy rate (male): 67%
- Literacy rate (female): 43%
Number of out of school children: 6.2 million
- Literacy rate (male): 72pc
- Literacy rate (female): 36pc
Number of out of school children: 2.5 million
- Number of Public Schools: 12,576
- 28pc of which are girls’ schools
- 84pc are primary schools
- 9pc middle schools
- 6pc high schools
- less than 1pc higher secondary schools.
Number of out of school children: 1.8 million