Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) have reached a decision regarding power-sharing in Khyber PakhtunKhwa. According to their agreement, JI will have three ministries, one of which will be the Education Ministry. However, keeping in mind the differences in both parties’ education manifestos, the question arises whether either party will be able to do much for the education sector in KPK.
Though both parties do agree on certain points, such as Urdu should be made the medium of instruction in all schools, the biggest variance in both parties stance on education comes in the form of GDP allocation. PTI had promised to increase GDP allocation for education from 2%, as it is currently, to 5%. JI does not even mention GDP allocation in its manifesto.
Furthermore, PTI’s manifesto claimed it would focus on girls’ education and would double the number of high schools for girls in the next five years. However, the issue of female education does not come up in JI’s manifesto. Along with this, PTI mentions improving existing government educational institutions while JI has talked about a unified education system that focuses on Islamic teaching and about introducing English, Math and other subjects in madrassa curricula. Along with this, PTI stated that it would focus on adult literacy for the 15-30 age bracket, another issue that JI does not talk about.
On the other hand, JI has mentioned it will focus on technical and vocational education and that costs of attending colleges of higher professional studies will be given by the government to deserving students from low-income households. In addition to this, JI has said it will introduce legislation for fees and quality control in education. PTI has not talked about any of these issues.
With such discrepancies in their manifestos, it is doubtful if much progress can be made in the education sector in KPK.