ASER Reveals the Sad State of Education in Pakistan

The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2016 has published details regarding its recent survey of educational facilities in Pakistan.

The report paints a horrible picture of the education quality that is being imparted in schools all over the country. It is based on the survey of 5,540 schools from 144 rural districts across the country.

The Findings of the Survey

Launched by Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA), ASER 2016 reveals that Pakistan’s education system has serious problems and is certainly not up to the mark.

Some of the shocking findings of the survey include:

  • 48% of grade 5 students in rural areas are unable to read Urdu stories.
  • 54% students could not read English sentences.
  • 52% students are not able to perform a simple two-digit arithmetic division.
  • 19% of children aged 6-16 years are not studying in schools which is the same as the last year, while the remaining 81% are not learning much either.
  • Pakistan has over 22 million children who’re out of school, second worst numbers after Nigeria.
  • 50% schools in the capital don’t have facilities like water or even boundary walls whereas more than 25% schools don’t have a usable toilet.
  • Only 36% girls could read sentences in Urdu, Sindhi, and Pushto, whereas for boys it was 43%.
  • Only 33% girls were able to read words in English whereas 40% boys could do the same.
  • When asked to perform a subtraction question, only 36% of girls and 44% of boys could solve it.
  • 48% students could not read Pashto and Sindhi stories in their relevant provinces.
  • In government schools, 13% of teachers and 17% of students were absent on the day of the survey.
  • 40% of the schools don’t have access to water, 46% don’t have a useable toilet, while 35% don’t have boundary walls

The Views

Senior Program Officer, Nargis Sultana, said that the government needs to be held accountable for the mismanagement of schools, and added that:

“Education should not just be amongst the priorities of the government, it should be the top priority”

Joint Education Adviser at the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training spoke at the launch of ASE report 2016, saying that it will prove helpful for future policy making.

Mosharraf Zaidi, an education campaigner, said:

“Due to the pressure exerted by civil society and NGOs, the government has started to take steps to improve the education sector, but there was much left to be desired.”

You can read the full report with some very interesting insights here.

Feature Writer