USAID awards scholarships to Sindh students

KARACHI: United States Agency for International Development (USAID) awarded scholarships to 102 students enrolled in Associated Diploma in Education (ADE) and Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) (Hons) programmes in Sindh as part of the $165 million Pakistan Reading Project. USAID provincial Director for Sindh and Balochistan Leon S Waskin also acting US Consul General for Sindh attended the event with Sindh Additional Chief Secretary of Education Dr Fazlullah Pechuho. The scholarships will pay for tuition and supplies as well as provide a stipend to recipients. The US government will provide more than 4,500 scholarships to aspiring teachers. During the ceremony, 11 future teachers who recently completed a US-funded ADE programme were awarded graduation certificates. Waskin said, “The quality and improvement of the education system depends critically upon the quality of teachers. The USAID funded Pakistan Reading Project is a significant initiative of the US government in collaboration with the government of Pakistan to improve the standard of basic education.” Dr Fazalullah Pechuho thanked US government for their support in improving the standard of basic education in Sindh. The Pakistan Reading Project will improve the reading skills of at least 2.5 million children to ensure they are reading at or above grade level by 2019.  The Project works closely with 28 Pakistani universities and 116 elementary teacher-training colleges throughout Pakistan to improve the quality of teaching skills and curriculum. Over the next five years, the Pakistan Reading Project will award a total of 1,066 ADE and B.Ed (Hons) scholarships to students from Sindh. The US partnership with the government of Pakistan supports the rehabilitation and construction of over 1,350 schools in Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. The United States is establishing centres for advanced education studies at four Pakistani universities and expanding English skills for more than 5,000 low-income students. The United States has awarded more than 4,800 scholarships to university students to pursue higher education through the Pakistan-USAID Merit and Needs Based Scholarship Programme.

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