UNESCO has published its new global education monitoring (GEM) Report recently, which revealed eye opening facts about the state of education, related facilities and the challenges being faced by the parents in providing quality education to their children around the globe. According to Report, three hundred and fifty million children and youth are now educated in non-state schools worldwide.
The report reveals that only 27% of countries clearly prohibit profit making in primary and secondary schools, while 7% of countries have quotas that enhance access to schools for poor students through initiatives. UNESCO highlighted the bitter fact that many countries across the world lack adequate regulations on private education or the capacity to enforce them, undermining quality of education and widening the educational divide between rich and poor. While discussing the case of Pakistan, UNESCO was of the view that Pakistan has the second highest household expenditure on education in the region; families are covering 57% of education expenditure, with the poorest struggling to meet school expenses. Overall enrolment rates in education are low in Pakistan, which gave a rise in the enrolment in private education across the country. According to a report, around a third of all school-going children in primary and secondary schools are in private institutions. UNESCO’s report categorically mentioned that the private schools in the country only serve the 45% richest compared to 11% of the poorest go to private schools.
The parents around the globe mostly attach high priority to the quality education of their children and always try to provide better educational facilities to their wards available to them however most of the time financial, social or administrative issues make their desire unsatisfied. As far as Pakistan is concern, education system has been spoiled in the country due to lack of interest of the lawmakers, low standard of education, teachers incompetence and non-availability of educational facilities and financial resources. Due to this reason, Pakistan has the lowest literacy rate in the region.
The school expenditures including school fees, stationary items and other expenditures become unaffordable for the parents and people are bound to borrow to fulfill their children’s education needs. There is no monitoring mechanism of private schools except initial registration by the Education department in the country therefore education standard and teaching environment both are declining day by day. Although UNESCO has suggested several measures to improve quality of education, capacity building of the people, provision of free education up to grade 12 and implementation of a monitoring mechanism for private schools, however neither government nor educationists have interest in improving their field and spreading the wealth of knowledge to their citizens. The incumbent government had made tall claims of free education, uniform curriculum and one education system, yet all of this has not happened so far.