Profiling out-of-school children
Based on an OPM study of data from Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, the UNICEF report reveals that the number of children not attending school in South Asia include 7.57 million children between the ages 5 to 10, and 25.29 million aged 11 to 13 years. These children are often unaccounted for in school records and are, consequently, often “invisible” to policymakers.
The report, which is published as part of the Global Initiative on Out-of-School Children, is designed to make these children visible by providing comprehensive profiles of them and identifying the socio-cultural barriers that exclude them from education, using both standardized and innovative statistical methods. Policy recommendations for addressing out-of-school children are also provided. More broadly, the report provides a methodology for countries beyond South Asia to tackle the issue.
In addition to quantifying the number of out-of-school children by age groups, the study profiles them against a variety of factors that influence their exclusion from school, ranging from household wealth and gender through to geographic location and their exposure to emergency situations. Demand- and supply-side barriers and bottlenecks to schooling are also systematically assessed.