Global Partnership for Education Organizes International Workshop in Athens this Week on Early Child Care
June 04, 2012
The Global Partnership for Education (GPE), the largest international education partnership, committed to spending nearly $2 billion on basic education in 2012-2015, will be conducting an international workshop this week in Athens on early childhood education.
“This event is critical because these early years of a child’s life shape their future, not just for their education, but also for their future health and incomes,” said Aigly Zafeirakou of GPE. “If we make these investments early in a child’s life, then nations not only get healthier and more productive citizens, they also save money and reduce future problems the nation must face”, she said.
Co-sponsored by UNICEF, the event entitled “Improving the Quality of Early Childhood Education for All”, is a high-level technical workshop which will provide training and support for education ministry officials from Central Europe and the CIS region. Eighteen countries from the region will be represented at the event, including representatives local donor groups and civil society organizations. Participant countries Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, are all current or prospective members of the GPE.
At the event, global experts will work with the participants to help develop and implement a system to monitor quality and student performance, share best practices, develop financing, create an appropriate curriculum, provide teaching training, and begin discussions on the formation of country and regional “communities of practice”’. The country teams will return home with a draft childhood education plan, focusing on the most vulnerable, and some will advocate for its endorsement by the appropriate authority for implementation.
Recent data have demonstrated that access to affordable quality early childhood education services remains very low for several Europe and Central Asian countries, especially in light of the ongoing economic crisis, and particularly for the most vulnerable children such as ethnic minorities and rural populations, Zafeirakou said. “These countries are coming in Athens because they know that Early Childhood Education is a powerful equalizer for reducing disparities in learning achievements of marginalized children, “she said.
GPE’s mission is to galvanize and coordinate a global effort to deliver a good education to all girls and boys, prioritizing the poorest and most vulnerable.
Established in 2002, GPE is comprised of 46 developing countries, and over 30 bilateral, regional, and international agencies, development banks, the private sector, teachers, and local and global civil society groups. The Partnership provides our developing country partners the incentives, resources, and technical support to build and implement sound education plans, and then mobilizes and coordinates resources to support the achievement of these plans' targets to help more children enroll in school and receive a better education.
For more information, visit http://www.globalpartnership.org/support-we-offer/early-childhood-care-and-education/