Islamabad - More than 20 million children in Pakistan between 5-16 years of age are out of school while majority of the enrolled students are not receiving quality education, experts said at Education Innovation Forum organised by Ilm Ideas 2.

Education is central to sustainable development and economic growth. Yet more than 20 million children in Pakistan are out of school, the experts noted.

Even for those who are in school, learning is not guaranteed. Many children receive an education of such poor quality that they leave school without knowledge and skills they need to thrive in the 21st century, they said.

The innovations being presented at the forum address both these challenges and are already helping to improve learning and increase access to education, a statement said.

Globally, consumers are choosing to engage with socially-responsible businesses and corporations, and this forum is a unique opportunity for companies in Pakistan to learn about and contribute to education initiatives, which are traditionally underfunded when it comes to Corporate Social Responsibility spending, said the experts.

“Access to quality education is the key to enhancing productivity and fostering economic growth in the country.

This event provides an excellent platform to learn about technological advancements and how various stakeholders can collaborate and bring about a sustained growth in the education sector,” said Muhammad Ali Ibrahim, head corporate responsibility at a telecom company.

“Owing to educational scarcity in Pakistan, education needs to be a top agenda in the Corporate Social Responsibility plan of every company.

Our company continues to take initiatives to close the gap between educational institutions and the industry,” said Syed Mazhar Hussain, an official with a semi-government telecom company.