Early Childhood Development in Palestine

School teachers and students at a kindergarten in Nablus.

Another priority for the Ministry of Education and Higher Education and identified as priority for joint UN support is that of early childhood development (ECD).

Despite high levels of enrollment in basic education, enrollment rates for early childhood education are low at around 40% for at least one year of preschool attendance, and only 5% for nursery attendance.

Moreover, most of these services are provided by the private sector such that they are only available to some families. According to the 2011 EFA Global Monitoring Report, the occupied Palestinian territory registered declines in pre-primary gross enrolment rates from 1999 to 2008.

UNESCO, together with eight UN agencies and partners, is working with the MoEHE to support planning and policy making for a more comprehensive and equitable provision of ECD in the occupied Palestinian territory.

Through a UN education package, the objective is to establish a one year pre-school in 46 existing government schools in marginalized areas of the West Bank and Gaza.

This will be linked to capacity development at institutional and teacher levels, as well as to efforts to improve linkages between schools and communities.

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