ISLAMABAD, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 25th july, 2016) : As many as 15 percent children of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB)'s from age 6 to 16 still remain out of school while the Federal and Provincial governments have started enrolment drives in these areas. According to the Annual Status of Education Report-ASER 2015 Gilgit Baltistan survey, the remaining 85% that are enrolled in the 6-16 age bracket are not learning much either. These findings were made public in the report of Pakistan's largest-annual citizen-led household based ASER Survey 2015 - the sixth ASER Survey report in a row-launched in GB recently.
The survey was released by the Jafar-ullah Khan Deputy Speaker Gilgit Baltistan. Five hundred volunteers managed by Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA) and National Commission for Human Development (NCHD), have conducted the ASER 2015 survey. Five hundred volunteer citizens, who personally visited 4103 households' in 209 villages/blocks, have based the ASER survey findings on the information of 13056 children of age 3-16 years (including 44 percent girls).
For the year 2015, the ASER rural survey has been conducted in 7 rural districts, wherein 5-16 year age cohort 8975 children were tested for English, Language (urdu), and Arithmetic competencies. The report aims to inform the progress or lack thereof with respect to Article 25 A of the constitution making education a fundamental right for 5-16 year old children since 2010. To date, the implementation has yet to take place as both laws and rules remain in abeyance! In spite of public demand, the state response at best continues to remain neutral to education as a basic need.
Parliamentarians and Ministers made commitments to be held accountable as duty bearers - but they must walk the talk, they must decide between a future based on an educated Pakistan and a dead end that marginalizes learning and undervalues social capital. The narrative on education must change dramatically under the current democratic dispensation. Proportion of out-of-school children has decreased as compared to 2014.
In 2015, 15% of children were reported to be out-of-school which has decreased as compared to previous year (14%). 12% children have never been enrolled in school and 3% have dropped out of school for various reasons. An interesting trend has been observed this year as reflected by ASER Findings. ASER 2015 results illustrate a considerable number of children going to public schools this year as compared to non-state schools. 56% children of age 6-16 are enrolled in public schools in 2015 while last year the percentage was 52%.