2001 News Story

Kingdom observes Arab Literacy Day

The Kingdom will observe tomorrow, January 8, the Arab Day for Eradication of Illiteracy, with a number of lectures and seminars. Saudi Education Minister Dr. Muhammad Al-Rasheed reports that Saudi Arabia's rate of illiteracy is steadily decreasing, noting that programs for the eradication of illiteracy began with the establishment of the Ministry in 1953, and that an independent administration was set up in 1958, becoming the Secretariat-General for Adult Education in 1985. The rate of illiteracy, he said, was down to 13.75 percent by 1996, and today it stands at only 8.8 percent. Saudi efforts to combat illiteracy have been appreciated at international as well as regional levels, with Saudi Arabia receiving a number of awards.