Cover Image
close this bookBreaking the Barriers - Women and the Elimination of World Poverty (DFID, 1999, 24 p.)
close this folderEducation and health
close this folderEDUCATION
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View the documentLiteracy and Non-Formal Education

Literacy and Non-Formal Education


As well as supporting improvements in schools, we are also addressing the special learning needs of women and girls who have never been to school or dropped out at an early age. In Egypt, for example, we are helping to improve the skills of rural literacy teachers who are working with women of all ages who have never been to school. Women wanting to improve their literacy skills can learn with female teachers, using gender sensitive materials, in classes held in the students' own homes. The project has also supported national television programmes which emphasise women's role in development.

We are part of a multi-donor consortium supporting the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC), which has developed an education programme with significant benefits for young girls. The project supports 34,000 low-cost single classroom schools. Each class enrols 33 children, 70% of whom are girls, and provides a three-year programme after which the children transfer to the formal system to complete their primary schooling.


Gender and Education

The Government's White Paper, Eliminating World Poverty:

A Challenge for the 21st Century states that we will focus our support on the fundamental elements of an effective education system: access, quality, retention and equity:

· Access - for girls as well as boys, rich or poor, rural or urban, and those in socially or ethnically disadvantaged communities
· Quality - to prepare children for the life ahead

· Retention - to enable pupils to benefit from the full cycle of education

· Equity - to remove all barriers to opportunity and achievement.