Ministry of Education Set to Distribute 2.2 Million Books to School Students in Afghanistan, Build New Schools and Upgrade Teachers

Mohammad Mirwais Balkhi, the acting minister of education said at a news conference in Kabul that the process for distribution of 2.2 million books to students is underway.

“To tackle the lack of books this year, 50 million books are published which will be provided to students across the country,” he said.

He announced that Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development will build 2700 new schools and Ministry of Urban Development and Housing 300 schools.

In addition to the above, 11,000 literacy courses will be conducted for 200,000 illiterate people including women, Kuchis and civil service servants and 10,000 others will benefit from professionals literacy classes, Balkhi explained.

He emphasised that 140 schools will get promoted this year, and 1170 local classes will be created to provide access to education in rural areas.

To deal with lack of teachers, recruitment process for 11,000 reserve teachers is underway, Balkhi clarified.
“Within next five years all unprofessional teachers will be covered under ministry’s capacity building program”, he said.

For efficiency of teacher training, Balkhi said tthat 40,000 teachers are set to benefit from capacity building programs this year.

He explained that 20,000 of them will go through in-service trainings at TTCs and the other half will be introduced to universities to pursue their BA degree.

Quality education is imperative in Afghanistan as it houses one of the youngest populations in the world. USAID has pointed out that as more and more Afghan children join schools, there is growing demand for textbooks, learning spaces, trained teachers and innovative approaches.

According to Afghan Ministry of Higher Education, over 9 million children are enrolled in school out of which, 3.5 million are girls.

But UNICEF pointed out that an estimated 3.7 million children are still out of school in Afghanistan, 60% of that figure being girls. The chief reasons are low attendance due to lack of female teachers, shortage of school, insufficient transportation, and the sociopolitical and humanitarian crisis.

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