It wasn't until that the Afghan government legislated free, mandatory education for children between the ages of 7 and Unfortunately, the provision of schools, teachers, and books lagged far behind the legislation. Before , schools existed, but whether or not a child attended school was completely up to his or her family.
Other families provided religious training for their sons. Some families simply did not send their children to school. It was still possible to receive an education, and determined families with sufficient resources could educate their children. There were secondary schools in urban areas and a university in Kabul. Since all education above the primary level was provided in Dari, all educated Afghans are fluent in that language, regardless of their ethnic group. During the Soviet occupation, the Soviets were interested in building up the education system and extending education into the rural areas but their efforts failed.
Education in Afghanistan
It was reported that in at least one area the Afghans responded to the establishment of Soviet-backed schools by killing the teachers, ostensibly because boys and girls were expected to sit in the same classroom. After the Soviets withdrew, what was left of the education system fell completely apart in the ensuing civil war.
Kabul University closed, its faculty members dispersing to Pakistan, Iran, or the West. Children were either taught at home, in the local mosque, or not at all. Under the Taliban, secular education did not exist. Boys received religious education, but girls were forbidden education altogether. Parents who wanted their children educated had to arrange for private tutoring in informal groups at home. Following the fall of the Taliban, Kabul University was reopened to both male and female students.
In , the American University of Afghanistan also opened its doors, with the aim of providing a world-class, English-language, co-educational learning environment in Afghanistan. Robert Spencer. The Mantle of the Prophet. Roy Mottahedeh. The Oxford Dictionary of Islam. Unholy Alliance. Jay Sekulow. The Secret History of Iran. Hamad Subani. Mohamed Siddig. Michael Axworthy. Islamic History. Britannica Educational Publishing.
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