As Egypt continues to work towards achieving its national development blueprint, Vision 2030, which highlights the role investment in human resources would play to help the country achieve its growth goals, the country has made education reform a priority and it is getting the support it deserves.
The United Kingdom will give £12 million ($15.8 million) to support Egypt’s education reform through the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
The funding will include support for teacher training, through the flagship education programme, and support children’s education in governorates across the country.
“I am proud that once again the UK is at the forefront of supporting Egypt’s development and growth,” said Middle East Minister Hon Alistair Burt.
“This fund sends a global message of support to the future generations of this country and will help the Egyptian government turn its education reform vision into a reality.”
British Ambassador to Egypt Sir Geoffrey Adams also commented on the new funding. According to him, an investment in Egyptian youth is an investment in Egypt’s future.
“Education is central to this. That is why the UK is committed to support Egypt in implementing its education reform plans so that Egyptian students all over the country are equipped with knowledge and skills they need to succeed.”
The World Bank had earlier in the year announced a $500 million investment in Egypt’s education reform programme as the North African country seeks to expand access to quality education and boost the role of technology as it works towards promoting sustainable, inclusive growth. The World Bank loan was aimed at expanding access to kindergarten for some 500,000 children, training 500,000 staff and supplying 1.5 million students and educators with digital learning resources, as part of the Egyptian Ministry of Education’s plans to modernise the pre-university education system.
The country hopes to increase the number of accredited schools by 60 percent, reduce illiteracy rates among 15- to 35-year olds to 7 percent from 28 percent recorded in 2015, and also improve the international competitiveness of Egypt’s primary education quality on the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Competitiveness Index.
Egypt’s educational indicators are impressive, especially when compared to fellow African countries. Egyptians, 15 years and older, have a literacy rate of 80.8 percent, according to the latest UNESCO data, while total literacy for 15- to 24-year-olds is 93.92 percent. Even literacy rate among old people is high at 71.73 percent for the country’s population aged 65 and older.
Despite the high literacy rate, Egypt is putting a lot of effort in education to secure its future. When the World Bank announced its support in April, Sahar Nasr, Egypt’s minister for investment and international cooperation, said the country’s ambitious home-grown education sector reform programme was “a strategic opportunity”, adding that the Egyptian government was “fully committed to developing the education system to build a productive generation that is well-equipped and ready for the competitive world”.