Reporter: Getting an education for girls in Afghanistan isn't easy. Even in the capital Kabul, this is the kind of classroom many girls have to settle for.
Student: I sit here. It is not a nice place to sit. Dust and dirt comes in, and makes it difficult.
Reporter: That though, is only one of the many barriers to access.
Sima Samar: It's a male-dominated country, and it has been quite, erm... I would say quite traditional, unfortunately. And then the war really pushed us back.
Reporter: This month marks sixteen years since the US-led invasion into Afghanistan, but recently the security situation has worsened. This week alone, Taliban attacks claimed dozens of lives. The lack of security as well as reduced engagement from international donors has meant that progress made towards getting girls into school has stalled, according to a Human Rights Watch report.
Ibrahim Shinwari: We estimate that 3.5 million children are out of school, and maybe 85 percent of them will be girls.
Reporter: Girl's education is often talked of as a success story by donors and the Afghan government. Today, millions more girls are in schools than were under the Taliban, but Human Rights Watch warns far more needs to be done.
Student: The rights of girls and boys are equal, and they should observe these things.
Reporter: But if government and international efforts aren't strengthened, the progress made by getting girls like these in schools risks being reversed. Sarah Firth, TRT World.