From VOA Learning English, this is the Education Report.
The United States government recently launched a 231-million-dollar international education effort. The “Let Girls Learn” program is designed to move forward public education for girls. The program will start with five countries: Afghanistan, Jordan, Guatemala, South Sudan and Nigeria.
The United States Agency for international Development, or USAID, is responsible for the programs. The agency says 62 million girls around the world do not go to school. It says millions more are fighting to stay in school. Many face danger trying to get an education.
Christie Vilsack serves as a USAID senior advisor for international education. She says it is important for young women to learn about education and to get support to attend school. She says girls are moved to learn by the lives of other girls like Malala Yousafzai.
Gunmen shot the Pakistani teenager on a school bus two years ago because of her activism for the education of girls. In Nigeria, the Islamic extremist group Boko Haram kidnapped hundreds of school girls in April. Most are still being held.
Christie Vilsack says “Let Girls Learn” will help about 250,000 girls in Nigeria. Ms. Vilsack says the program will train high- quality teachers. She says it also uses a new system to measure student progress.
The official says she saw children in Pakistan taking a short test under this system. She says it quickly shows the ability to recognize letters. And it tells whether the students can name and pronounce, or speak, the sounds of the letters.