Conservative customs, poverty, lack of educational facilities and a strong culture of gender discrimination have deprived over five million school-age children (over three million of them girls) of an education, according to aid agencies and the Ministry of Education (MoE). That is roughly one third of Afghanistan’s under 18 population of about 14.5 million in 2007, according to the UN Children’s Fund.
Most illiterate children are girls. According to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), literacy rates for Afghan females aged 15-24 in comparison to their male peers were on average about 10 percent lower
Afghanistan is one of the least literate countries in the world. Only 18 percent of women and 50 percent of men are able to read and write, according to UNESCO