ROLE OF EDUCATION IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
The development economists until 1960s attached great importance to material capital such as machines new factories new buildings etc. in the development process of the country. The manpower was not regarded an important variable for increasing productivity and income. Since 60's the emphasis is gradually shifting to manpower as an important factor of development.
Education is considered as the cornerstone of broad based economic growth and the poverty reduction Education is a key to change and progress. The consensus is the Pakistan economic growth can be achieved with higher emphasis on the quality of its manpower.
Manpower consists of all segments of a society which are engaged in one from or the other in development activities. If a country has a trained manpower, it makes economic activates highly productive both in quantitative and qualitative aspects. If the manpower is illiterate, unskilled under-nourished and of poor health, the output per man is low. This eventually leads to low income, low investment and the country remains trapped in vicious circle of poverty.
The government of Pakistan is trying its best to improve human capital so that it should server as a leading factor for the socio-economic development of the country. Public sector expenditure on education as percentage of GDP for the three years remains on average at around 2.4%. The illiteracy rate is estimated at 54% in the year 2006-07.
There is no doubt that in the last over three decades, the literacy ratio has increased to 54% and the quality of education has improved, yet the progress on the whole is not satisfactory. The mass failure of students in the examinations, the misdirected education is resulting in the waste of precious resources of the country. It is therefore suggested that to meet the present and future requirements of manpower in different sectors of the economy, it should be development on the following levels:
1. Manpower Oriented to the industrial Requirements.
2. Manpower Oriented to Agricultural Requirements.
3. Manpower to Cater Services Requirements.
I-Manpower Oriented to industrial Requirements.
The present day plants are becoming highly complex. There are rapid changes in the production patterns. In order to meet the changing requirements of the industrial sector, the education and training has to be carried on the following lines:-
1. Handling new production lines innovations.
2. Handling of new sophisticated equipments.
3. Technological assistance in maintaining the plant and the machinery.
4. Expansion in plant facilities.
5. On job facilities for improving performance.
6. Training for managerial performance.
II-Manpower Oriented to Agricultural Activates:
Our economy is basically agricultural employing about 60% of the total population. We can hardly boast of an existence of an effective manpower in this sector. In order to increase effective manpower for the sector, it is suggested that development should be made on the following lines:
1. Establishment of new rural academies and strengthening of the existing ones for imparting agricultural know-how at the levels of primary, secondary and higher education.
2. Compulsory enrollment of young people to these academies.
3. Development of experimental farms attached to academies for practical education and demonstration.
4. Establishment of rural based industries side by side and providing technical training.
III-Manpower to Cater Various Services Requirements:
Service sector's requirements are of a very wide range. The areas wherein manpower specially requires to be developed include skilled masons, technicians, electricians and electrical services, qualified workshop operators, steel reactors, machines plumbers, foremen/supervisors and computer literates etc. The development of this intermediary manpower would be greatly rewarding to the entire society as the performance in the various sectors will be greatly improved. Secondly the exportable manpower will be much more qualified to secure better jobs and earn more in and outside the country.
Summing up, we can say that developed manpower would be the greatest sources for (1) promoting moral values (b) creating a national self respect, (c) promoting self reliance on domestic resources (d) providing link for coordinating all agents of economic forces and (e) creating a sense of confidence and security among the new generations.