The Ministry of Education and Sports and the World Bank have strengthened ties and renewed cooperation in improving standards and outcomes in Laos’ education system.

This was the message delivered during a visit to the Ministry of Education and Sports by a delegation from the World Bank led by the Country Manager of World Bank Laos, Mr Nicola Pontara.

During his meeting with the Minister of Education and Sports, Mrs Sengdeuane Lachanthaboun, future plans and assistance for Lao education from the World Bank was discussed.

Improving participation rates and attaining better outcomes in education has been a primary focus of the government. Pre-school and primary school education are the sectors that require the most focused assistance, according to the Ministry of Education and Sports.

The government plans to improve educational standards in 2019 with programmes to increase school enrolment and make sure more children complete their primary school education.

These targets have been set out in the Education Sector Development Plan for 2020.

The ministry plans to increase the enrolment of five-year-olds to over 60 percent by 2020.

School completion rates at the primary school level are expected to reach at least 95 percent, while the yearly dropout rate should not exceed 6 percent. The enrolment of girls at upper secondary schools is targeted at 70 percent.

Over the next five years, the ministry will address challenges in pre-school education by encouraging children to be reasonably proficient in Lao before going to primary school.

Better preparation of the youngest students will mean fewer are likely to drop out of school later due to language difficulties.

The ministry will continue to strengthen partnerships in education and human resource development with regional and overseas organisations.

By Keoviengkhone Bounviseth, VT


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