Vol. 17, No. 2, April — June 2010
Technical & Vocational Education & Training for Females in Pakistan
Females in Pakistan tend to be less visible with respect to their enrolment in education, labour force participation and contribution to economic activities. Pakistan is a labour-intensive economy with a high demand for skilled manpower. It is noteworthy that current female participation in the labour force is merely 26.48 percent and stands at the lowest among neighbouring countries in the region (World Development Indicators, The World Bank, 2008). This demand for skilled labour can only be met through increased participation of females in the labour force and the need still remains to equip them with relevant skills. Ownership of institutes within the public sector do not fall under one purview but rather come under the Technical Education & Vocational Training Authorities (TEVTAs), Directorate of Manpower Training, Directorate of Technical Education, Pakistan Bait-ul-Maal, Fauji Foundation, Social Welfare Special Education & Women Development Department, Industries and Commerce Department and training centres established under the armed forces. It is found that there are 442 public sector female institutes, out of which 397 are vocational and 27 technical institutes. In these institutes 129 different types of trades are being offered and 2,590 teachers are associated with these institutions. Presently, 74,112 females are enrolled in the morning shift while enrolment in the afternoon shift is just 16,856. The reason for lower enrolment in the afternoon shift is attributed to a fewer number of courses being offered in the afternoon shift. In general, females have less access to Technical and Vocational Education and Training for Females (TVET) than males but in our case, cumulative enrolment for females is higher than males. Further break-up shows that vocational institutes for females have a higher number of trainees than males while the opposite is true for technical institutes (see appendix). The aggregated student-to-teacher ratio for females and males is 35:1 and 12:1, respectively. Moreover, average number of teacher per institute is 6.0 for females and 15.0 for males. Female enrolment levels with respect to course type is highest in short and certificate level courses with aggregate share of (68.68%) followed by Diploma in Associate Engineering (DAE) (0.83%), vocational diploma (8.49%), G-II level (0.10%) and G-III level (3.04%). There are 27 DAE courses recognised by the federal government, however, only five different kinds of DAE courses are being taught, which include electronics, architecture, ceramics, food technology, and computer information technology. Furthermore, enrolment in DAE level courses is well below the total installed capacity thus, demonstrating that it is less popular among the country’s females. Out of 442 institutes, only four do not have any classroom, 105 have no computing facilities, 96 are lacking in laboratory/workshop facility and 270 institutes have insufficient equipment and teaching materials. By and large, males have better access to classrooms, laboratory/workshop and computing facilities. On an average, the number of classrooms per female institute is 4.0 as compared to 5.0 for males. Similarly, computing machines per institute for females are 4 against 16 for males and availability of laboratory/workshop per institute is 1.0 for females as opposed to 5.0 for males. Comparing the relevance of courses by major industrial divisions, percentage of courses related to community, social and personal services (46.86%) is highest followed by manufacturing (29.04%), handicraft (15.98%) and the rest of the sector (8.12%). As compared to this, the Labour Force Survey reports that the percentage of employed female labour force by economic sectors is as follows: agriculture, forestry,...