EDUCATION IN SINDH
S.KAMAL HAYDER KAZMI,
Research Analyst, PAGE
July 9 - 15, 2012
The government of Pakistan needs to upscale entire education system so it will produce skilled, innovative, and enterprising graduates capable of promoting dynamic economic development. However, the main objective of government policy in the last few years has been to improve the level and quality of education.
The government's vision is to expand primary education and this measure can be used to assess whether government schools have increased their coverage, by increasing enrolments faster than the growth in population, especially at the primary level because that level forms the core of the literate population. Literacy and primary school enrolment rates in Pakistan have shown improvement during last five years but they are still lagging behind other countries of the region. Scarcity of resources and inadequate provision of facilities and training are the primary obstacles in imparting and expanding education.
Total Cost Rs1261.773 Million Source of Fund Federal PSDP Project Period 5 years Current Year Allocation Rs252 Million
The present government's strategy for the sector includes improving the function and utilization of existing schools, improving the quality of education, increasing enrolment, improving access to education and expanding the primary education system.
The government of Pakistan and Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) have signed an MOU to develop a project for providing basic needs to all teacher training institutions of Sindh. This project will focus on supporting and improvement of teacher training programme through development and production of teaching resources, mobile in-service teaching units, resource kits and stipends/ scholarships to pre-service teacher education candidates.
The government of Sindh has initiated Benazir Bhutto Shaheed Youth Development Program (BBSYDP) for un-employed educated youth. Under this programme, 6000 educated un-employed youth will be trained in English language proficiency, mathematics and science subjects and 350 tutors will be trained as master trainers to conduct the training. In order to improve the quality of teachers, B.Ed classes were introduced at the provincial institute of teachers education (PITE) at Benazirabad. Early childhood education and early learning programmes have been introduced in Sindh. Post-graduate courses have been introduced in degree colleges as well.
The World Bank has approved a package of assistance worth $400 million to help the government of Pakistan improve access, quality, and relevance of education at every level. The projects are designed to improve conditions for teaching, learning, and research for enhanced access, quality, and relevance at the tertiary level across the country while continuing to increase enrolment rates and reduce gender and rural-urban disparities in primary education in Punjab and Sindh.
It is said that Sindh has improved education services and between 2009 and 2011, primary net enrolment increased by 450,000 children from 50 per cent to 53 per cent under the Sindh education sector reforms programme (SERP). The ratio of female-male primary net enrolment in rural areas rose to 72 per cent from 61 per cent. More than 1,500 schools were rehabilitated and 13,000 new contract teachers were hired on merit.
SINDH EDUCATION SECTOR
Project (SEP), a result-based investment initiative, has supported the SERP since 2009. The SERP, a comprehensive medium-term programme, focuses on improving governance and accountability to enhance school participation, reduce gender and urban-rural disparities in school participation, increase grade progression, and improve the measurement of student learning. A public-private partnership brought about an enrolment increase of 29 percentage points in poor rural communities and significantly improved student performance at a cost of only $3 per student per year. Additionally, 295 primary schools have been created through public-private partnership in disadvantaged rural communities. Entrepreneurs receive per-student subsidies conditional on free schooling provision and student test scores. School enrolment in these communities is 92 per cent compared to 63 per cent in other communities.
Sindh government has allocated Rs15,400 million for education and literacy sector in annual development programme of the province for fiscal year 2012-13. Out of total Rs15,400 million educational budget, Rs768.621 million were earmarked for elementary education, Rs5,924.708 million for secondary education, Rs4,117.430 million for college education, Rs1,545.664 million for higher education, Rs139.966 million for teachers' education, Rs1,313.622 million for Sindh education foundation and Rs1,589.989 million for various other sectors. There had been significant developments in education sector like setting up of two new universities, seven cadet colleges including two girls' cadet colleges at Shaheed Benazirabad and Larkana as well as the creation of four engineering colleges/institutes and a law college.
LITERACY RATE IN SINDH (10 YEARS & ABOVE) (%)
MALE FEMALE TOTAL Sindh 71 46 59 Rural 60 22 42 Urban 82 68 75
Unluckily, floods caused loss of Rs24.5 billion to education sector in Sindh. The education process of as many as 460,000 students at 7,753 school buildings were affected by the floods.
In Sindh, the political instability has become a serious and threatening problem especially for education system. It is creating massive problems and hindering development of the province. The students are more interested in the flags of political parties rather than education. Education is affected by sectarian and ethnicity-based politics. The students should focus on their future.