Girls’ Schooling and Women’s Literacy: Schooling Targets Alone Won’t Reach Learning Goals

by Lant Pritchett and Justin Sandefur
Center for Global Development (CGD) Policy Paper 104, February 2017

20 pp. 571 kB

Using the Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data on the ability of women at various levels of schooling attainment to read a simple sentence, the authors show that reaching universal completion of grade six among girls would not bring the world anywhere close to the goal of universal female literacy. Achieving new Sustainable Development Goal targets of universal literacy and numeracy will require both achievement of universal schooling and dramatic improvements in the learning profile in most developing countries.

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