RAMALLAH, September 8, 2015 (WAFA) – Illiteracy rates among people aged 15 years and above in the Palestinian Territory declined from 13.9% in 1997 to 3.6% in 2014, Tuesday said a report issued by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) on the eve of the International Literacy Day, which falls on the 8th of September.
PCBS said, “According to UNESCO Institute for Statistics, the illiteracy rate among persons 15 years and above in Arab States was 22.5% (about 51.8 million illiterate) in 2012, whereas the illiteracy rate in the world among the same age group for the same year reached 15.7%.”
It said in 2014, the illiteracy rate among older persons aged 65 years and above attained 43.0% (57,611 illiterate); the rate was 1.5% in the 15 – 64 year age group (40,310 illiterate) and 0.6% among young people aged between 15 – 24 years (6,293 illiterate) in the same year.
In 2014, the illiteracy rate among rural localities reached 5.0% (25,190 illiterate), while scored 3.3% (64,321 illiterate) in urban areas and 3.2% (8,410 illiterate) in the refugee camps, said PCBS.
In 2014, the male illiteracy rate was highest in rural localities, followed by urban areas and refugee camps with the same rate. Female illiteracy rate was highest in rural localities, followed by urban areas and refugee camps respectively.
The illiteracy rate in the year 2014 among persons 15 years and above in Palestine was 3.6% (97,921 illiterate): 3.8% in the West Bank (66,547 illiterate) and 3.1% in Gaza Strip (31,374 illiterate).
It noted, “The illiteracy rate varies considerably between sexes: 1.6% for males (22,161 illiterate) compared to 5.6% for females (75,760 illiterate) in the same year.”
According to the United Nations for Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) – the title ‘illiterate person’ applies to persons unable to read or write in any language and who were never awarded a certificate from any formal educational system.