Education is considered as the cheapest defence of a nation. But the down trodden condition of education in Pakistan bears an ample testimony of the fact that it is unable to defend its own sector. Though 62 years have been passed and 23 policies and action plans have been introduced yet the educational sector is waiting for an arrival of a saviour. The government of Pervaiz Musharraf invested heavily in education sector and that era saw a visible positive educational change in Pakistani society. Now a days, the economic situation in Pakistan is under stress and education is the worse effected sector in Pakistan. The Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan says,

“The state of Pakistan shall remove illiteracy and provide free and compulsory secondary education within minimum possible period.”

In Human Development Report, Pakistan is placed at 136th position for having just 49.9% educated populace. The primary completion rate in Pakistan, given by Date Center of  UNESCO, is 33.8% in females and 47.18% in males, which shows that people in the 6th largest country of the world are unable to get the basic education. Following are the problems of education in Pakistan.

Firstly, the educational system of Pakistan is based on unequal lines. Medium of education is different in both, public and private sectors. This creates a sort of disparity among people, dividing them into two segments. One division is on the basis of English medium language while the other is Urdu medium language.

Secondly, regional disparity is also a major cause. The schools in Balochistan (The Largest Provice Of Pakistan By Area) are not that much groomed as that of Punjab (The Largest Provice Of Pakistan By Population). In FATA, the literacy rate is deplorable constituting 29.5% in males and 3% in females.

Thirdly, the ratio of gender discrimination is a cause which is  projecting the primary school ratio of boys & girls which is 10:4 respectively. For the last few years there has been an increase in the growth of private schools. That not only harms the quality of education but create a gap among haves and have nots.

Fourthly, the lack of technical education is a biggest flaw in the educational policy that has never been focused before. Therefore, less technical people means less progress. This flaw is tried to be covered by the government of President Pervaiz Musharraf. Specially, Pervaiz Elahi worked very hard to improve the education standard in Punjab.

Fifthly, the allocation of funds for education are very low. It is only 1.5 to 2.0 percent of the total GDP. It should be around 7% of the total GDP. During his reign, a record 3 to 4 percent of the budget was earmarked. Later on in the PPP government the budget was reduced drastically in this sector. We should follow the example of Malaysian government which earmarks about 35 percent of its GDP to education sector.

Sixthly, the teachers in government schools are not well trained. People who donot get job in any other sector, they try their luck in educational system. They are not professionally trained teachers so they are unable to train a nation. However, professionally more trained people can educate the people to build a good nation.

Finally, Poverty is also another factor that restrict the parents to send their children to public or private schools. So, they prefer to send their children to madressahs where education is totally free. The worst effected are girl children because parents stop them from going to school and hand over trivial jobs to earn few bucks at home.

Recently, minister of education announced a new Education policy for that next 10 years. The interesting thing is that the previous educational policy from 1998 to 2010 is still not expired. Although it is projected to give new plans and to make more promises with the nation. It is said in this policy that all the public schools will be raised upto the level of private schools. No plan of action have been discussed, yet a notice is issued to private schools to induct government course in 5th and 8th class and these classes will bound to take board exams. This disturbed the students of private sector also.

Solutions for Educational System: Estimating the value of education, the Government should take solid steps on this issue. Implementation instead of projecting policies, should be focused on. Allocation of funds should be made easy from provinces to districts and then to educational institutes. Workshops must be arranged for teachers. Foreign states are using LSS system. This should be inducted in Pakistani schools to improve the hidden qualities of children. Technical education must be given to all the classes. The education board of Punjab have projected a plan to give tech- education to the children of industrial workers. Promotion of the primary education is the need of time. Teachers, professors and educationists should be consulted while devising any plan, syllabus or policy. The state seems to give up her responsibility and totally relying on private sector. The need of time is to bring education in its original form to masses. Burdening a students with so much books will not work as he will not understand what the world is going to do next moment. Education is the only cure of the destability in the state and can bring revolution through evolution, by eradicating the social evils. This is how to remove illiteracy in Pakistan.

January 31, 2010 | Iram Saleemi | 30 Comments | 308 views