In 2010, BRAC established five schools in Pakistan's Lasbela District, providing primary education to 165 students-over 70% of whom are girls-and helping these students transition into the mainstream school system. This project will cover all expenses for two full years covering 4th and 5th grade curriculum, equipping these students with proficiency in English, science, math and social studies and other government curricula.
Reports have shown low retention rates for both girls (44%) and boys (50%) in Pakistan's primary schools, with rates falling sharply after 3rd grade, especially for girls living in extremely poor communities. Challenges include the high cost of enrollment and school supplies, a shortage of programs that promote school readiness and minimal social support of girls' education. The lack of basic education and literacy can potentially lead to exploitation, child labor and early marriage.
The Lasbela schools provide a completely free education and follow government curriculum, easing the transition into mainstream schooling. The schools cater to children who would otherwise lack access to basic education due to financial or social constraints. The project will cover all anticipated costs for the two most critical drop-out years of 4th and 5th grade.
This project aims to decrease drop-out rate at the primary school level, contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal of providing universal access to primary education, reduce poverty and improve quality of life for children in Pakistan by inhibiting child marriage and child labor, and empower young girls to combat exploitation and gender discrimination.