‘Won’t Stop Even If It Costs My Life’: Afghan Teachers Determined To Fight For Women’s Education

Even as the Taliban took over Afghanistan and imposed restrictions in the new regime, Afghan educators and teachers are determined to fight for women’s education even if it means that they could lose their lives. Meanwhile, the Taliban have refused to let co-education exist in the country and have called for different universities and educational institutes for men and women.  

Further, only male teachers can teach men, and female teachers can teach women. 

“I am proud of my work. I will never stop this even if it costs me my life,” a teacher in Kandahar province was quoted as saying under anonymity.  

The teacher has been campaigning for the rights of women and their education in Afghanistan. She works at a non-government organisation that has opened over 100 schools in as many as 13 backward provinces of the country. 

As the Taliban have seized control of Afghanistan, they have offered hope that the country would not have to return to the hard-line regime. The Taliban promised to protect press freedom. In the group’s first news conference, they vowed to respect women’s rights.   

“After the Taliban return, we are afraid that we will lose all our rights, but the Taliban are stating that they won’t stop us from [going to] schools and won’t take our rights,” one of the Afghan teachers 

“If the Taliban don’t let us study, we won’t stop and lose the courage we have,” they added. 

According to the World Bank data, the literacy rate in Afghanistan in 2018 is 43.02%. Of these, the literacy rate of adult females (15-years-old and above) is 29.81 in 2018. At the same time, the literacy rate of the adult male population is 55.48.  

If we come to the youth population (ages 15-24), the literacy rate is 65.42. of these, the literacy rate of female youth is 56.26, and male youth is 78.1. 

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