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The United States funds comprehensive education programs that will help millions of Pakistani children unlock their full potential.

Basic Education in Pakistan
Helping improve literacy and early grade reading skills
USAID Pakistan

USAID is carrying out comprehensive education programs in Pakistan to help millions of children and young people rise as far as their hard work and initiative will take them. The United States supports efforts to enhance student enrolment in schools, student assessment, and early-grade reading. Together with teacher training, these efforts will bring 3.2 million children to read at or above their grade level by 2018.  Additionally, we are working to improve access to higher education and help universities tailor their programs to the needs to the country. 


USAID has helped rebuild or renovate more than 600 schools over the last three years – providing 86,000 children with new spaces where they can study and learn. In many of these schools, USAID supplied computers, science kits, books, and other educational materials. Another 120,000 children will have access to newly constructed or rehabilitated schools by 2018. 

To ensure that Pakistan’s schools are able to provide quality education to their students, USAID helped 15,000 teachers and school administrators upgrade their skills through short-term courses since 2009.  Additionally, Pakistan’s Higher Education Commission and USAID designed and rolled out two new teacher education programs: the two-year Associate Degree in Education and the four-year Bachelor’s Degree in Education.  These programs are now being taught at 23 universities and 79 colleges to nearly 6,000 students. USAID funds scholarships for 2,350 of these men and women. USAID also funds construction of state-of-the-art faculty of education buildings on five universities, so that future teachers have modern facilities and tools to learn their profession. 


The United States supports students in pursuing rewarding careers through scholarship programs at Pakistani and U.S. universities. Overall, U.S. goal is to provide 21,000 higher education scholarships by 2018 for promising, but under-served students to enhance their employability and engage in research relevant to the needs of business, government, and communities. At least half of these scholarships will go to women.

Already 10,000 students have received scholarships to attend school in Pakistan.  Pakistani students also have an opportunity to study in the United States: The Fulbright academic exchange program sends competitive Pakistani students for degree programs in the United States and brings U.S. scholars to Pakistan. Through this effort, approximately 600 Pakistani students have studied in American universities in the past three years in fields such as education, engineering, energy management, biochemistry, and health policy.


The U.S. academic community is cooperating with Pakistan through multiple university partnerships. Since 2005, Pakistani and U.S. governments have awarded over 70 grants for Pakistani and U.S. scientists to work together on ground-breaking science and technology cooperative research. These partnerships seek to introduce innovative solutions to Pakistan’s development challenges. 

USAID is also working with the Higher Education Commission to establish Centers for Advanced Studies at four Pakistani universities. The centers will collaborate with American universities to create more relevant curriculum and conduct applied research programs in agriculture, energy, and water. The centers will have strong links to the business community and will address policy issues in the sectors. 

Last updated: March 16, 2015

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