Right to education

In 2022, the National Commission on the Rights of Child revealed that as many as 22

8 million Pakistani children between 5 and 16 years of age were out of school

This bleak figure should have compelled the government to mull over the issue and devise a strategy to bring children back to school

Alas, improving education is rarely a government priority

Recently, the First Lady, Begum Samina Arif Alvi, opened an education centre in Multan to provide free education to children of the dwellers of the husk cottage settlements

She emphasised the need to bring children back to school to boost the country’s socioeconomic development

This move serves as a good example to increase collaboration between the government and non-governmental organisations as the project is headed by a private non-profitable organisation based in Multan

The organisation will provide free education to 250 children and shelter to 29 families

Given the enormity of Pakistan’s educational crisis, the Ministry of Education should involve provincial education departments, non-governmental, and grassroots organisations to address the different challenges

Local community leaders and teaching staff who are more familiar with the day-to-day problems should be included as well

A lack of government facilitation, misappropriation of funds, and poor outreach are some of the main reasons why many children remain out of school

Endeavours such as the one in Multan aim to support families and offer education to their children

Perhaps, a similar approach should be adopted in other parts of the country to prepare tailored or targeted educational reforms to encourage children to return to school and stay in education

Low-income and impoverished families will need to be incentivised and malpractices such as ghost schools will need to be tackled head-on

The country will be met with a tragic fate if it fails to guarantee quality primary and secondary schooling for the younger generations and improve higher education attainment

Published in The Express Tribune, February 27th, 2023

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Date:28-Feb-2023 Reference:View Original Link