The national literacy rate has reached 71.4% today. Our youth literacy rate is even better at 93%.
The PDP Government has undertaken the biggest school reform program with the establishment of 63 central schools. These schools benefit children of poor parents and those from economically disadvantaged families who do not have the resources to provide nutritious food, adequate clothing or extra classes.
To ensure access to healthy and nutritious food for our children, we also focused on school feeding programs by supplying fortified rice to schools. The number of boarding student increased from 33,000 in 2013 to 41,000 in 2018 and the number of students receiving day feeding increased from 20,000 to 33,000.
For kindergarten care, there are 282 government Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) centers providing care and education to children from 3 to 5 years of age. In the past five years, the government established 200 ECCD centers and our policy is for every chiwog to have an ECCD center.
The curriculum of all subjects were revised and improved for classes PP to 12. For this review, the government involved all teachers, educationists, Dzongkhag Education Officers, experts, students and parents.
Our teacher-student ratio is 1:18 and this is one of the highest by any standard in the world. All teachers including those in private schools were provided professional development trainings at a total cost of Nu. 215 million.
Five new colleges were established in the past five years taking the total number to18 colleges. The five new colleges are: