Arab World


18. Kuwait > Education

State education is free for all Kuwaitis and attendance is compulsory between the ages of six and 14, in the primary and intermediate stages.

There is a private education sector originally set up for foreign nationals living in Kuwait who want their children educated in their mother tongue.

After the Gulf war, the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs reopened the 14 Holy Qur'an Centres (eight for women and six for men) as well as introducing the Institutes for Islamic Studies (one for each gender) which at the moment cater for nearly 2,000 people. The Ministry also introduced 77 learning circles for the Qur'an, in which 1,232 women and 685 men are studying. There are also 128 illiteracy eradication centres.



Figures from UNESCO for 2007 show that 77 per cent of young children were enrolled in pre-primary education, 87 per cent of girls and 89 per cent of boys were enrolled in primary school, and 80 per cent of girls and 80 per cent of boys were enrolled in secondary school.


Kuwait University opened in 1966. It originally had 418 students and 31 teaching staff members. Recent figures show it has 17,419 students, 890 staff members and a budget of 58,280,000 KD. (Sources: Ministry of Planning/ Kuwait Facts and Figures, State of Kuwait).


The adult literacy rate is 95.2 per cent for males and 93.1 for females. For the age group 15-24 years the rate is 98.4 per cent for males and 98.5 per cent for females. In 2006 12.9 per cent of government spending went on education. (Source: UNESCO, August 2009)

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