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In late March 2020, the UNICEF office in the Kyrgyz Republic received a GPE grant of US$70,000 to support the Ministry of Education. The funds helped develop online learning platforms and contents in local languages for all children, including children with disabilities, by subject and levels of education, following the educational plans and syllabuses for all grades.

The grant also supported the development of gender-responsive instructions for caregivers on different kinds of learning and play activities to do at home, broadcast on the radio, TV and in print.

Education in Kyrgyz Republic

The Education Development Strategy 2020 (EDS 2012-2020) of the Kyrgyz Republic was officially approved in 2012. It included a costed Action Plan for the period 2012-14. The EDS was aligned to education Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and based on extensive analytical work and widespread consultations with stakeholders. It was formally appraised using GPE guidelines, and endorsed by development partners in 2013.

The Ministry of Education and Science (MoES) of the Kyrgyz Republic is beginning the process of updating the EDS, aligning to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and projecting a longer-term vision beyond the EDs 2020. As the EDS is half-way through implementation, the revision will provide a change to review how it is working, incorporate lessons learned, and take account of changes in the political-economic environment.

There has been considerable progress and experience since 2012 in terms of expanding pre-primary coverage, with nearly all pre-primary children benefiting from at least one year of pre-primary schooling. Competency-based curricula have been introduced at the primary level, with revisions for the secondary level nearing completion. Management of the education budget including funds flow has been moved from the Ministry of Finance (MinFin) to the MoES, which has decentralized significant budgetary responsibilities to the rayon level. Per-capita financing to determine school-level budgets has been rolled out nationally. The revision process will allow the ministry to assess progress, fine-tune strategies, address the gaps and align the steps to achieve the goals set for 2020 and the Sustainable Development Goals.

Parliamentary elections were held in October, 2015 leading to the appointment of a new Minister of Education and Science. While there is broad continuity in government development strategies through the National Sustainable Development Strategy, the government has set new goals for the social sectors in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); and is placing greater emphasis on employment and technical training. The MoES is eager to put in place Action Plans for the period 2017-2020, aligned with an updated EDS, and in close collaboration with development partners.

The Kyrgyz Republic’s education system faces several challenges. These include inadequate resource allocation and financial management, inequality in the learning outcomes across geographical regions, very low levels of pre-school coverage, and a shortage of teachers and teaching materials.

The EDS 2020 outlines 12 objectives to be achieved by 2020 (revision for 2017-2020 in progress):

  1. The majority of preschool children are in pre-school programs.
  2. Access to high quality basic general and secondary education for everyone, regardless of socio-economic status, ethnicity, religion, or gender.
  3. Opportunity to choose specializations for graduates of basic general education institutions.
  4. Development of working skills aligned to current labor market and population interests and needs.
  5. The creation of continuous lifelong learning conditions.
  6. Development of social partnership and employers’ proactive participation in the education system and process.
  7. Introduction of competence-based learning approach aimed to improve communication, analytical, and decision-making skills.
  8. Transition to education credit system to provide mobility and flexibility to students, combining work and study in higher education institutions.
  9. Preservation of cultural and linguistic diversity and tolerance in education environment.
  10. Support for multichannel education financing and fair distribution of financial resources.
  11. Development of strategic planning and management system in education based on data collection and analysis techniques.
  12. Launch of a monitoring and evaluation system to systematically improve the education system.

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Latest grant

Children in class at a preschool preparation program.  Kyrgyz Republic, March 2018.

Children in class at a preschool preparation program. Kyrgyz Republic, March 2018.

CREDIT: Ministry of Education, Kyrgyz Republic
Development objective: Increase equitable access to pre-school education, and to establish conditions for improving its quality
Allocation: US$12,699,459
Years: 2014-2018
Grant agent: World Bank
Disbursements: US$12,699,459

The latest GPE grant of US$12.7 million is primarily focused on supporting the preschool objective of the 2012-2020 Education Development Strategy.

The three components supported by the grant are:

  • Expanding quality pre-primary education through the expansion of community based kindergarten, the full year school preparation program, and the provision of inclusive education.
  • Improving policy, programs, and system effectiveness through implementing the Early Learning Standards, enhancing the measurement of children’s development, and supporting study visits and training related to early childhood development.
  • Providing technical and financial assistance for communication and advocacy, stakeholder monitoring, and implementation support.

The ministry of education and science leads the program in partnership with the World Bank as the grant agent and UNICEF as the coordinating agency.


All amounts are in US dollars.

Grant type Years Allocations Disbursements Grant agent  
Program implementation 2014-2018 12,699,459 12,699,459 World Bank Completion report
2011-2012 5,908,730 5,908,730 World Bank Completion report
2007-2010 8,990,278 8,990,278 World Bank  
Sector plan development 2017-2018 500,000 500,000 World Bank  
Program development 2017-2021 400,000 348,711 World Bank  
2013 192,023 192,023 World Bank  
  Total 28,690,490 28,639,201    
Data last updated: November 15, 2020

GPE has also provided the Education Coalition in Kyrgyzstan (ECK) with a grant from the Civil Society Education Fund, to support its engagement in education sector policy dialogue and citizens’ voice in education quality, equity, and financing and sector reform.

Education sector progress

The graphs below show overall progress in the education sector in Kyrgyz Republic, and GPE data shows the country progress on 16 indicators monitored in the GPE Results Framework.

Primary completion rate

Lower secondary completion rate

Out-of-school rate for children of primary school age

Out-of-school rate for adolescents of lower secondary school age

Pre-primary gross enrollment rate

Gender parity index for out-of-school rate

Public expenditure on education as share of GDP

Students/trained teacher ratio

Teachers trained

Source: World Bank - Education Data
Data on education are compiled by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics from official responses to surveys and from reports provided by education authorities in each country.

Last updated May 18, 2020