ELENA KOSOLAPOVA, PH.D.Content Editor for Climate Change Policy and Adaptation (Russia/Netherlands)
12 September 2017
6 September 2017: The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has reported that pervasive levels of poverty, protracted conflicts and complex humanitarian emergencies caused the global out-of-school rate among 6-15 year olds to stagnate, and called for more investments to address the causes keeping vulnerable children out of school.
According to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics (UIS), 123 million, or 11.5%, of school-age children worldwide are out of school today. The numbers have barely decreased since 2007, when 135 million, or 12.8%, of children missed out on learning.
With their high poverty levels, Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia account for 75% of the global out-of-school primary- and lower-secondary school age population.
Children living in the world’s poorest countries and in conflict zones are disproportionately affected, with 40% of out-of-school children living in the least developed countries (LDCs) and 20% in conflict zones. With their high poverty levels, Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia account for 75% of the global out-of-school primary- and lower-secondary school age population. At approximately 16 million, the number of out-of-school children across the Middle East and North Africa, where many countries are plagued by wars, is at its 2007 level.
Calling for “greater and more predictable funding for education in unpredictable emergencies,” UNICEF Chief of Education Jo Bourne cautioned that the “business-as-usual approach will not get the most vulnerable children into school – and help them reach their full potential – if they continue to be trapped in poverty, deprivation and insecurity.”