The Philippines is now left behind by Thailand, Brunei and other countries in the region in terms of literacy rate, according to recent report released by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
So new a country in the region to gain independence, “BRUNEI has the second highest literacy rate among ASEAN countries after Thailand,” revealed a report released by the ASEAN Secretariat, “but primary and secondary school enrolment has dropped slightly.”
Brunei was among countries having poor literacy rate at time of its independence in the 80s while the Philippines was at the top.
Among the 10 ASEAN member countries, Thailand leads the pack with adult literacy at 98.2 per cent as of 2011, followed by Brunei at 96.9 per cent and Singapore at 96.2 per cent.
Cambodia recorded the lowest adult literacy at 79.9 per cent of the population, according to data compiled in the ASEAN Community Progress Monitoring System report.
Recent data was not available for Laos and the Philippines.
Adult literacy in Brunei rose by 1.6 per cent from 2000 to 2011, the report stated.
Countries that made significant improvements in adult literacy were Thailand, improving by 5.6 per cent over 10 years and Indonesia, which improved from 88.6 per cent in 2000 to 94 per cent in 2011.
All ASEAN countries also showed advances in net primary and secondary school enrollments, except for Brunei.
Brunei secondary school enrolment fell from 100 per cent of secondary school-aged children in 2000, to 97 per cent in 2011. The report did not explain the reason for the decrease.
Singapore leads the 10-nation bloc with the highest primary and secondary school enrolments, at 100 per cent and 98 per cent respectively.
Statistics also showed that Singapore and Thailand had the highest tertiary enrolment in 2011, at 72 per cent and 63 per cent respectively. No data was available for Brunei tertiary enrolment in the report.