Education in Nepal
To continue its efforts to ensure equitable access to quality education for all, the Government of Nepal has developed its School Sector Development Plan for 2016 to 2023. The plan seeks to:
- Ensure that the education system is inclusive and equitable in terms of access, participation and learning outcomes,
- Increase students’ learning by enhancing the relevance and quality of the learning environment, the curriculum, teaching and learning materials (including textbooks), teaching methods, assessment and examinations,
- Strengthen and reorient governance and management systems in the education sector to make them robust and accountable to local governments while assuring agreed overall minimum standards in teaching and learning processes and learning environment,
- Accommodate the political and administrative restructuring of the education sector in line with the identified needs and the federal context and to ensure sustainable financing and strong financial management by introducing a cost-sharing modality between central, provincial, and local governments,
- Mainstream comprehensive school safety and disaster risk reduction in the education sector by strengthening school-level disaster management and resilience amongst schools, students and communities and to ensure that schools are protected from conflict.
The following highlights the plan’s key components with their respective objectives:
- Basic education aims to develop physical, socio-emotional, cognitive, spiritual, and moral potential for all 4-12-year-old children by ensuring school readiness and universal access to quality basic education, and to promote life skills and value-based education,
- Secondary education aims to make students ready for the world of work by developing skilled human resources, provide options between technical and general secondary education, strengthen institutional links and facilitate the transition to higher education,
- Literacy and lifelong learning aims to enhance functional literacy and cultivate reading and learning habits among youths and adults.
All amounts are in US dollars.
Source: World Bank - Education Data
Data on education are compiled by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics from official responses to surveys and from reports provided by education authorities in each country.
Primary Gross Enrollment Rate (%)
Primary Completion Rate (%)
Lower Secondary Completion Rate (%)
Out-of-school Children Rate (%)
Public Expenditure on Education as Share of GDP (%)
Public Expenditure on Education as a Share of Public Expenditure (%)
Public Expenditure on Primary as a Share of Total Education Expenditure (%)
Student/Trained teacher ratio
Teachers Trained (%)
GPE in Nepal
Nepal’s first grant from GPE was US$117,8 million, covering the years 2010-2014.
The Nepal School Sector Reform Program 2009-2016 (SSRP) is Nepal’s national education sector plan and has made important improvements in the areas of access, gender parity, schooling efficiency, and quality, which indicate that the program is making good progress towards achieving its development objective.
GPE’s grant was pooled with eight other partners’ funds to support the national system under the SSRP, which covers approximately 7 million students, 200,000 teachers and 28,000 public schools from pre-primary to grade 12 across the country.
Nepal received a new grant of US$59.3 million (prepared prior to the 2015 earthquakes) under GPE's new funding model, in which 30% of the grant is disbursed with demonstration of significant results in the three key dimensions of equity, efficiency, and learning outcomes that is deemed likely to lead to substantial progress in the medium term.
The grant provides further support for the Nepal School Sector Reform Program, and the newly developed School Sector Development Plan with a focus on the following primary objectives:
- Ensure equitable access to and quality of basic education for all children of 5-12 age group, prepare preschool aged children through early childhood education development for basic education, and deliver basic numeracy and literacy to youths and adults – especially women and marginalized groups.
- Improve access, equity, quality, and relevance of secondary education, targeting 13-16 year-old children.
- Improve capacity of the School Sector Reform Program’s implementation agencies and its partners to enhance delivery and monitoring of educational services and products.
The local education group is chaired by two entities: (i) the Ministry of Education, who defines policies, and (ii) the Department of Education, who is in charge of implementing education strategies. The current coordinating agency is UNICEF.
The devastating earthquakes of April and May 2015 destroyed or damaged nearly 36,000 classrooms, leaving more than one million children lacking access to safe, permanent places to learn. Despite these setbacks, the School Sector Reform Plan 2009-2016 has achieved the following results:
- The primary net enrollment rate (NER) for grades 1-5 currently stands at 97% up from 92% in 2009.
- The net enrollment rate for grades 1-8 increased from 73% in 2009 to 89% in 2016.
- The primary completion rate has increased from 58% in 2009 to 81% in 2016.
- Gender parity in enrollment has been achieved at primary, basic, and secondary education levels.
- More than 90% of teachers in community schools were provided with professional development training.