Before 2009, there were few early childhood programmes in Afghanistan. Today, thanks to the Aga Khan Education Services in Afghanistan (AKES,A), over 3,000 children, mainly from remote areas, are enrolled in more than 70 early childhood development (ECD) programmes across the country.
This rapid growth began eight years ago when 300 children engaged in six community-based learning Centres (CBLC), in an effort to support children’s transition to primary school.
To address these challenges effectively, AKES conducted a series of trainings and workshops with ECD teachers, parents, children, and primary school teachers. It also designed a monitoring and evaluation tool -- in collaboration with teachers and parents -- to help assess and address a child’s readiness for primary school. The programme also introduced regular visits by children and parents to the primary schools to learn more about their new environment.
This collaborative approach has helped over 3,000 children -- almost half of them girls -- successfully transition to primary schools.
In Afghanistan, AKES programmes reach close to 25,000 students. In addition to childhood development centres, AKES in Afghanistan also works in selected districts, including Kabul, to develop skills in English Language and Information Technology that is specially focused on developing employable skills for out-of-school children. It also assists school-going children with tutorial assistance programmes.