Backgrounder: Buddhist monks and education

By Elizabeth Wilson

  • Cambodia is 96.4% Buddhist, 2.1% Muslim, and 1.5 % other.
  • 84,7 % of men over 15 can read while only 64.1% of women can read.
  • The school life expectancy is 10 years.
  • The number of monks and novices has risen since the late 1980s, from 8,000 to more than 60,000 today.
  • Traditionally, the Buddhist wat, using monks as teachers, provided the only formal education in Cambodia.

Sources: ( ( (


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