Despite significant progress in recent decades, Morocco still lags behind some other Maghreb countries, including Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya, in terms of adult literacy rates more than six decades after gaining independence in 1956. So whats the current Morocco adult literacy rates in comparison with Maghreb countries?
In fact, with a literacy rate of around 76% as of 2021, Morocco has the second-lowest rate in the region, only ahead of Mauritania.
According to the World Bank, Morocco’s adult literacy rate has improved from around 42% in 1990 to approximately 72% in 2019. However, this still falls behind the rates in other Maghreb countries. As of 2021, Algeria’s literacy rate stands at 82%, Tunisia’s at 83%, and Libya’s at 89% (as of 2014).
In comparison, Mauritania has the lowest literacy rate in the region at only 66%. While Morocco has made significant strides in improving its literacy rate, there is still room for further improvement to catch up with other Maghreb countries.
Reasons For progress
Morocco has made some progress to fight illiteracy due to several reasons.
Government Investment in Education: Morocco’s government has invested heavily in education, increasing funding for schools, and making education more accessible to all citizens. The government has made education a top priority and has set a goal of achieving universal education by 2030.
Focus on Primary Education: Morocco has placed a significant emphasis on primary education, which is the foundation for future learning. The government has increased the number of primary schools and has made primary education compulsory for all children aged between 6 and 15.
Education Reforms: Morocco has implemented several reforms aimed at improving the quality of education. The government has revised the curriculum to focus on critical thinking, creativity, and problem-solving skills. The reforms have also increased the number of qualified teachers and introduced teacher training programs.
Increased Access to Technology: Morocco has also made efforts to increase access to technology in schools, providing students with access to computers and the internet. This has helped to improve educational outcomes and provided students with access to a vast array of information.
Cultural Values: Education is highly valued in Moroccan society, and many families place a significant emphasis on education for their children. This cultural value has helped to drive educational attainment and has encouraged more children to stay in school and pursue higher education.
In recent years, Morocco has made significant progress in improving its literacy rates through the implementation of literacy programs by NGOs and the government’s commitment to eradicate illiteracy by 2024.
However, there are still significant obstacles to overcome in the battle against illiteracy. These include a lack of professional training, low wages for program teachers, and resistance from some school principals to allow their schools to participate in the programs.
Despite these challenges, women have been at the forefront of efforts to combat illiteracy, making up around 80% of program participants. Non-compulsory education programs have also reached rural areas, with an estimated participation rate of 49%.
Over the past decade, the illiteracy rate among women has decreased by 12.6%, while the rate among men has only decreased by 8.6%, according to the ANLCA website. These statistics show that while progress is being made, there is still work to be done to ensure that all Moroccans have access to the benefits of education.