Saturday, June 22, 2024


Dhaka Tribune

When do we start valuing education?

Without the appropriate policy support and budget allocation, we are reduced to mere cliches

Update : 11 Jun 2024, 02:14 PM

Of all the conversations and decisions pertaining to the national budget, the lack of conversation surrounding our continued lack of spending with regard to our education sector deserves to be highlighted.

While on the surface, the new 2024-25 fiscal year budget proposes an allocation of Tk94,710 crore for the education sector -- an increase from the Tk88,162 crore in the revised budget of the outgoing financial year -- this does not present the full picture of the sector that, given Bangladesh’s ambitions over the next two decades and beyond, should be among the most supported sectors. 

It is no secret that Bangladesh’s education quality has simply not been up to the mark, especially as it relates to equipping the future generation with the appropriate knowledge and skills that the ever-changing 21st century demands.

Yet, it is a matter of shame that since 1975, the proportion of budget allocation to this sector has decreased. Furthermore, the allocation towards the education sector is 1.7% of GDP -- disappointingly short of the global median and, more egregiously, the lowest in the South Asia region.

There must come a time when policymakers reflect on how much we truly value the development of our nation, and just how much we care about the future health of our citizens. It is all well and good to state that education is the backbone of a nation, but without the appropriate policy support and budget allocation, we are reduced to mere cliches without much else to show.

If we are serious about building a Smart Bangladesh, then we must show we are indeed smart, and invest more in education to prepare the nation for our future.

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