Out of school children undoubtedly constitute one of the most

significant challenges to the education system of Pakistan.

However, both the government as well as development partners, realise the gravity of the situation at hand. The World Bank’s

(WB) assistance to the government in developing a new model of nonformal education is another intervention in the education system to

fill in the service delivery gaps. The proposed plan that the WB is going to help Pakistan with is a ‘catching-up’ programme for those kids

who do not attend schools. The scheme shows the commitment of

both the state and its partners to educate out-of-school children.

The proposed model looks promising as it offers Accelerated Learning Programmes (ALPs) to out-of-school kids. These ALPs will enable

such children to catch up with their peers in the formal school system.

Even without formal education, this model stands to imbibe all necessary knowledge to kids in two or three years, which they otherwise

acquire in a span of five years. The biggest advantage of adopting this

new model of non-formal education is that it allows for more personalised learning to be developed for each person while providing basic

education to all, giving a boost to the national literacy rate.

Nevertheless, this new strategy of non-formal education aiming to

facilitate mainstreaming of out-of-school kids will be not an easy one.

The previous efforts in this regard proved unsuccessful. Both the state

and development partners need to take note of the failures of earlier

endeavours so that the present plan does not suffer the same fate. The

government can look at other countries that have systems to ensure

that members of society who fall through the schooling network have

basic education or certification at the very least. Such a model of nonformal education will prove effective in making every out-of-school

child a productive and self-reliant member of society.