Iran’s literacy rate reaches up to 96.6%

TEHRAN – The rate of literacy among Iranians between 10-49 years has reached 96.6 percent, Shapour Mohammadzadeh, head of the Literacy Movement Organization, has stated.

Before the [1979] Islamic revolution, according to a census conducted in 1976, over 51 percent of the people were illiterate, he said, ISNA reported on Wednesday.

Over the past four decades, in the Iranian calendar year 1395 (March 2016-March 2017), the average literacy rate in the age group of 10 to 49 has reached 94.7 percent, he further noted.

The literacy rate in some provinces such as Tehran, Isfahan, Yazd, Semnan, and Mazandaran has reached up to 98 percent, he said, adding, in provinces meeting the national average, 50 percent of the activities are dedicated to educating the illiterate and the rest to mastering literacy.

But in some other provinces such as Sistan-Baluchestan, the rate is 81 percent, which is lower than the national average, so that 70 to 80 percent of activities are dedicated to education and 20 to 30 percent to mastering literacy.

In deprived areas, we will cover up to 70 percent of the education cost, and all our efforts are to solve the problem of illiteracy across the country, he highlighted.

Steps toward illiteracy eradication

Some 50 percent of the activities of the Literacy Movement Organization is focused on literacy empowerment so that there is no return to illiteracy.

The literacy rate difference between men and women has declined from 26 percent before the 1979 Islamic Revolution to 2.8 percent, Mohammadzadeh stated in August 2020.

The difference in literacy rate between urban and rural areas has decreased from 34.9 percent in 1976 to about 12 percent in 2019, which demonstrates a significant rise in the literacy rate of rural areas.

According to the censuses conducted between 1976 and 2016, the literacy rate of urban areas has increased from 65.5 percent to 99.8 percent. At the same time, the literacy rate in rural areas has increased from 30.5 percent to 78.5 percent.

The allocation of about 80 percent of literacy activities to girls and women, especially in rural areas, has led to a faster increase in the female literacy index.

According to a census conducted in the Iranian calendar year 1395 (March 2016-March 2017), there are 2.6 million illiterates in the age group of 10 to 49 in the country, of whom 360,000 are foreign nationals.

The Organization plans to educate more than 30,000 illiterate foreign nationals residing in the country, Mohammadzadeh said in December 2020.

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