Statistics: Adult illiteracy rate in Palestine 3.3% in 2015

The illiteracy rates among persons aged 15 years and above in Palestine was 3.3 percent in 2015, said the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) on Wednesday.

In a press statement issued on the eve of International Literacy Day, the PCBS said that there were about 94,000 illiterate persons in Palestine aged 15 years and above in 2015.

According to the United Nations for Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) the illiterate person applies to persons unable to read and write with understanding a simple statement related to one’s daily life.

In 2015, the illiteracy rate among persons 15 years and above in Palestine was 3.3% (93,843 illiterate): 3.5% in the West Bank (63,105 illiterate) and 3.0% in Gaza Strip (30,738 illiterate).

The illiteracy rate varies considerably between sexes: 1.5% for males (21,814 illiterate) compared to 5.1% for females (72,029 illiterate) in the same year.

In 2015, the illiteracy rate among older persons aged 65 years and above attained 38.6% (52,463 illiterate). The rate was 4.4% in the 45-64 year age group (22,881 illiterate), 1.1% in the 30-44 year age group (8,984 illiterate) and 0.7% among young people aged between 15-29 years (9,515 illiterate) in the same year.

Around 56% of illiterate persons are aged 65 years and over, while the lowest rate is among persons aged 30-44 years.

In 2015, the illiteracy rate among rural localities reached 4.8% (25,086 illiterate), while scored 3.0% (60,600 illiterate) in urban areas and 3.0% (8,157 illiterate) in the refugee camps. In 2015, the male illiteracy rate was highest in rural localities, followed by urban areas and refugee camps respectively. Female illiteracy rate was highest in rural localities, followed by refugee camps and urban areas respectively.

In 2015, the highest illiteracy rate among persons aged 15 years and above was in Tubas and Salfit governorates, scoring 4.7% (1,991 illiterate) in Tubas governorate and (2,102 illiterate) in Salfit governorate. The lowest rate was in Gaza and North Gaza governorates with 2.7% (9,728 illiterate) in Gaza governorate and (5,579 illiterate) in North Gaza governorate.

Illiteracy rates among persons aged 15 years and above in Palestine fell in the period 1997-2015 from 13.9% to 3.3%. For males, the rate fell from 7.8% in 1997 to 1.5% in 2015, while for females it fell from 20.3% to 5.1% over the same period.

According to UNESCO Institute for Statistics, the illiteracy rate among persons 15 years and above in Arab States was 21.5% (about 51.4 million illiterate) in 2014: for males, 14.2% (17.7 million illiterate) compared to 29.4% for females (33.7 million illiterate). For the same year, the rate was 14.7% (about 758.2 million illiterate) in the world among the same age group: for males. 10.8% (279.2 million illiterate) compared to 18.5% for females (479 million illiterate).

Source: WAFA