Activity sheet 2 Educating girls in Bangladesh

1. Assume the role of a village elder and write a short paragraph to explain why you think it is important to educate girls as well as boys to at least secondary level in your community.

2. The table below shows the percentage of boys and girls that attend secondary school in different countries of the South. These are divided into three regions, Central & South America, Africa and Asia.

Country Male (%) Female (%)
Central and South America
Argentina 73 81
Columbia 62 72
Costa Rica 48 52
Mexico 58 59
Venezuela 29 41
Burkina Faso 11 6
Congo Dem. Rep. 32 19
Ethiopia 12 10
Mozambique 9 5
South Africa 77 92
Bangladesh 28 14
China 73 66
India 59 38
Indonesia 52 44
Thailand 38 37

Source : UNICEF "State of the World's Children 1999"

d) Construct two bar graphs to present the data for boys and girls that attend secondary school.

e) Describe the differences between the different regions in terms of the percentages of boys and girls attending secondary school. Are there any exceptions to the overall patterns that you have identified?

3. As more boys and girls attend school, there should be more career opportunities in skilled work, generating more money for the country as a whole and so the Gross National Product (GNP) per capita should increase.
To test the hypothesis, "As education levels improve, GNP increases too", study the data below which shows the percentage of teenagers who attend secondary school and the Gross National Product per capita for the same countries as question 2.

a) Use the data to construct a scatter graph to see whether there is a relationship between secondary school attendance and GNP per capita. Use the x axis for secondary school attendance and the y axis for GNP per capita.

b) Does your graph show that there is a statistical relationship between secondary school attendance and GNP per capita? Are there any countries that do not fit into the overall trend?

Country % attending secondary school GNP per capita ($) 1998
Argentina 77 8,030
Columbia 76 2,470
Costa Rica 40 2,770
Mexico 66 3,840
Venezuela 49 3,530
Burkina Faso 13 240
Congo Dem Rep 37 110
Ethiopia 25 100
Mozambique 22 210
South Africa 95 3,310
Bangladesh 22 350
China 70 750
India 60 440
Indonesia 56 640
Thailand 48 2,160

The World Bank: "World Development Indicators 2000"