Yemen has seen significant improvement over the past decade in reducing its out-of-school population. Net enrollment rates increased from 56 percent in 1999 to 76 percent in 2011, but despite this progress the country is still far from achieving universal primary education. The education sector faces key challenges:
Access: Over 1 million children are out of school, and most of them live in rural areas and marginalized communities.
Equality: Girls represent 63 percent of the total primary-age, out-of-school population in Yemen.
Quality: Yemen was ranked the lowest of 36 countries participating in the Trends in Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), largely because of low reading skills. The limited availability of qualified teachers is a key cause of this poor quality, and of the significant disparities within the national average.
The Learning for All Ministerial meetings focused on several key solutions:
- Expand the school-based development program, which focuses heavily on improving quality, through increased local accountability and teaching materials;
- Increase conditional cash transfers (CCTs), with a direct focus on school attendance for disadvantaged girls;
- Provide greater educational opportunities for out-of-school children (OOSC) and disadvantaged groups; and
- Expand food distribution to incentivize girls’ education in rural areas.
Over three years, the activities associated with these proposals will benefit 374,832 disadvantaged children, including 106,000 girls, as well as 15,859 schools located in rural and poor communities.The total implementation cost is estimated at $185.2 million, which is being requested from external donors.
Photo Credit: Dubai Cares