The true wealth of a nation lies not in its gold or silver but in its learning,
wisdom, and in the uprightness of its sons
In Lebanon, the burden of education falls on parents’ shoulders, who pay a combined US$1.5 billion annually, with the government paying an additional US$1.2 billion (World Bank 2017).
The reason for that? Most parents have little choice but to send their children to private schools, as public schools, already at full capacity, lag severely behind in terms of education quality. In 2019, more than half (54.2 per cent) of the Lebanese students were enrolled in private educational institutions, according to the Center of Administration and Statistics.
But unfortunately, this year alone, because of the economic collapse the country is facing, close to 90,000 students (18 percent of public sector students) transitioned from private to public schools, as parents can no longer afford tuition.
The contraction in the economy and increase in poverty rates will likely lead to many more parents shifting their children to public schools in the coming years, as well as higher student drop-outs, especially from the most marginalised households.
Lebanon can’t afford to lose a generation. Today more than ever, it needs an educated youth to tackle the problems the country is facing and build a better future for themselves and the next generations.