Literacy in Pakistan

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Helpdesk Query:
  1. Produce a summary of the key literacy statistics in Pakistan for the population as a whole as well as for children up to the age of 15 – broken down by end of grade 2, end of grade 5, and age 15 (grade 8).
  2. Identify effective organisations who teach literacy (Urdu and English and any others) in Pakistan, preferably at scale.

Literacy broken down by class were available from the Annual Status of Education Report for 2012:

  • Class 2 Urdu: 22%; English: 20.9% literate
  • Class 5 Urdu: 75.6; English: 77.7% literate
  • Class 8 Urdu: 98.6%; English: 99.2% literate

The ASER statistics are markedly higher than statistics from other sources.

The most recent statistics available were from the 2013 Jan-Mar Labour Force Survey:

  • Population: 47.5% literate
  • Ages 5-9: 29.7% literate
  • Ages 10-14: 75.7% literate

The most recent World Development Indicator statistics are from 2009:

  • Adult 15+: 54.9% literate
  • Youth (15-24): 70.7% literate

Organisations who teach literacy in Pakistan include:

  • Bunyad Literacy Community Council have developed a non-formal education project.
  • Pakistan Literacy Project (PLP) provides resources to community volunteers to enable female adult learners to acquire basic reading skills.
  • The Pakistan Reading Association have 11 centres in public schools to improve English in Bahawalpur. Evaluation showed learning achievements were greater than in counterpart schools.
  • Literacy Boost is Save the Children’s programme to support the development of reading skills in young children. Results show students on the programme significantly outperformed their counterparts.
  • Developments in Literacy (DIL) operate student-centred models in 179 schools across Pakistan.
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