While in Karachi we visited the CEO of a major Education Fund that received a multi-million pound grant from DFID (UK) to promote education in Sindh Province. We spent a pleasant hour with him and shared many of our aspirations and dreams for the future of education, especially of the minorities. We were very interested in the ambitions of his charity.
What struck us most forcibly was their exclusive focus on Primary education. “Our focus is primary level education and EFS is targeting to enroll 200,000 out of school children in schools by 2015.” It is written in their website.
“What happens,” we asked, “when the children complete their Primary schooling?”
The answer: “They go on to a Government or some other school” … or more likely they join the tragic statistic of school dropouts and return to the child labour market.
We are increasingly convinced that Primary education without quality higher education only produces a generation of literate sweepers, cleaners and brick kiln workers. We must do all we can to keep the children in school and to help them fulfil their dreams. That can only come through a focus on higher education – lower statistics perhaps but more successes.