Education in Pakistan

Topics: Education, Human rights, Literacy Pages: 5 (1694 words) Published: November 16, 2013
“When right of education is denounced”

Education is a universal, fundamental human right, recognized by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and reaffirmed in international human rights conventions. In this era of technology, advancement and globalization, education is the key to success and peace. Education is considered as the cheapest defense of a nation. But the worst condition of education in Pakistan reflects the fact that it is unable to defend its own sector. Though 62 years have passed and 23 policies and action plans have been introduced yet the educational sector is waiting for an effective educational reforms. With respect to Human Development Index, Pakistan has been placed by UNDP at 136th position, lower than some of its regional neighbors like Sri Lanka, Maldives, India and Myanmar mainly due to its low literacy rate and low primary level enrolment. In different reports the Ministry of Education claimed that literacy in Pakistan is over 50%, but open sources disagree with it and they say that it is merely 35%. Ratio of budget indicates the level of importance given by a nation to the education. Historically, Pakistan has been spending less on education, as compared to other countries in the region. Pakistan spends less than 2% of its GDP on education which is less than Iran, India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Maldives the neighboring countries of Pakistan, the world standard stands at 5% of the GDP. With such non serious attitude towards Education, there remains a dearth of well educated and skillful individuals. Among the SAARC Nations, Pakistan is at the sixth and at the 159th position among the 174 World countries.

Pakistan’s Constitution, framed in 1973, declared the country’s commitment to providing education for all. According to Article 37, “the State shall:- Remove illiteracy and provide free and compulsory secondary education within the minimum possible period. Make technical and professional education generally available and higher education equally accessible to all on the basis of merit”.

Recently, through a Constitutional Amendment No 18, free and compulsory education for the children aged 5 to 16 years has been declared a fundamental right. Article 25-A of the Constitutions provides that; “The state shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by the law.”

From the reports prepared by UNESCO and the literacy data prepared by Statistics Division, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, Govt. of Pakistan it is evident that as a nation we have been deprived off from our basic right to education, as a result today we stand towards the end in the line of literate nations. What had been are problems and what are the barriers, confronting our way to literacy, are some of the questions need our attention. In the following paragraphs we examine the critical situation and obstacles that we face today in this regard.

Poverty is the biggest disadvantage and the largest obstacle in the development of our country. Pakistan is classified into the 3rd World countries mainly due to poverty with education or Literacy Rate. Our country is an agricultural country therefore more than 68% of the population is engaged in farming and its byproducts. The people in this category are unable to feed their families fully and as a result, development stops while on the other hand population increases. The people where 40% of population is below the poverty line cannot think of sending their children to schools. According to UNICEF, 17.6% children work and support their families. So, in such conditions, role and support of Government becomes inevitable but Government is continuously paying no serious attention to these demands.

The ever increasing population of the Pakistan is another hindrance in the correct and efficient caring of the family. That is why many people are unable to provide such level of education to their...
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