The federal cabinet on Tuesday approved a framework to enroll out-of-school children. The Federal Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Shafqat Mahmood, apprised the cabinet that there are 18.7 million out-of-school children in Pakistan, adding that one in every four children in Pakistan has never attended a school.
The minister also informed about the sluggish progress made on education participation and narrowing the gender gap and revealed that Balochistan has the highest number of out-of-school children and lowest participation.
A summary presented before the cabinet claimed that Pakistan had 63.3 million school-aged children, while the learning poverty rate in the country stands at 75 percent.
The minister noted that the pandemic is expected to aggravate the challenges to enroll the out-of-school children back to school.These statistics reflect the dire situation of both foundational skills and their importance for productivity and growth. Only an educated workforce can contribute to economic growth. Inaction in bringing children and youth to schools and keeping them there will severely limit Pakistan’s potential for higher productivity and economic growth, and will maintain a sizable informal labor market and high poverty rates.