Literacy rate is one of the important indicator of education as its improvement is likely to have a long run impact on other important indicators of national welfare.
According to the latest Pakistan Social and Living Standards Measurement (PSLM) Survey 2013-14, the literacy rate of the population (10 years and above) is 58 percent as compared to 60 percent in 2012-13 showing a decline of 2.0 percent.
The data shows that literacy remains higher in urban areas (74 percent) than in rural areas (49percent), and is more prevalent for men (81.0 percent) compared to women (66.0 percent) in urban areas. Province wise data suggests that Punjab leads with 61 percent followed by Sindh with 56 percent, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with 53 percent and Balochistan with 43 percent. The details are given in the Table below.
The Economic Survey 2015-15 unveils following statistics for the education sector,
Government of Pakistan is currently spending 2.1 percent of its GDP on education sector and is fully committed to enhance education spending from 2.1 percent of GDP to 4.0 percent of GDP by 2018.
Gross Enrolment Rates
Gross Enrolment Rates (GER) referred to the participation rate of children attending primary schools divided by the number of children aged 5 to 9 years.
GER at the primary level excluding Katchi (prep) for the age group 5-9 years at national level during 2013-14 recorded at 90.0 percent as compared to 91 percent in 2012-13.
Amongst the provinces, Punjab has shown significant performance by achieving Primary level GER at 100.0 percent against 98 percent in 2012-13 while other provinces have performed negatively i.e. Sindh GER declined to 76 percent in 2013-14 against 81 percent in 2012-13 and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa also declined to 89 percent in 2013-14 against 91 percent in 2012-13 while Balochistan GER also declined to 67 percent in 2013-14 as compared to 73 percent in 2012-13.
Net Enrolment Rates
Net Enrolment Rates (NER) at the primary level refers to the number of students enrolled in primary schools of age 5 to 9 years divided by the number of children in the same age group for that level of education.
Net Enrolment Rates (NER) at the national level during 2013-14 remained at 57 percent.
Province wise comparison reveals that Punjab NER slightly improved to 64 percent in 2013-14 as compared to 62 percent in 2012-13 while NER of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa remained at 54 percent.
Sindh NER declined to 48 percent in 2013-14 as compared to 52 percent in 2012-13; while Balochistan witnessed declined to 39 percent in 2013-14 as compared to 45 percent in 2012-13.
At national level, the total number of enrolments during 2013-14 was recorded at 42.1 million as compared to 41.1 million during the same period last year. This indicates an increase of 2.4 percent and it is estimated to increase to 43.4 million during 2014-15.
The number of institutes which stood at 240.9 thousands during 2013-14 as compared to 241.5 thousands during last year. This shows a slightly decline of 0.2 percent. However, the number of institutes is estimated to increase to 244.9 thousands during 2014-15.
The number of teachers during 2013-14 was recorded at 1.53 million as compared to 1.55 million during last year showing a decline of 1.2 percent. This number of teachers is estimated to increase further to 1.57 million during the year 2014-15.
HEC is also contributing to play its role in running different scholarship programmes to enhance academic qualification at various levels on merit basis in line with specified criteria. During the period 2008-14, a total number of 10,376 Scholarships were awarded under different programmes of HEC.
The Government of Pakistan has allocated Rs.20.021 billion in PSDP 2014-15 for 191 development projects (136 ongoing and 55 new ) of HEC with main focus on Human Resource Development through merit and Need based scholarships.