264 million children need your voice to end the global education crisis

“Nothing for us without us” - Youth voices shape the future of global education

Two girls take care of their younger siblings in Nigeria. Credit: GPE/Kelley Lynch

Two girls take care of their younger siblings in Nigeria.

Credit: GPE/Kelley Lynch

Quality education is the civil rights struggle of our time. 264 million children and the many more not learning need to win this battle.

Young people are demanding change

Today, young people are standing up to make their voices heard and end the global education crisis. They are standing up across our global village demanding quality education for all. They demand that education be free, equitable, safe, inclusive and well-funded.

Young people are speaking out for girls education in Africa, to demand solutions to end child marriage, because refugee education matters, to find ways to break the cycle of poverty, and to say how education has transformed their lives and shaped their future. They are demanding change and they are demanding it now.

Half of the upcoming youth generation will not be on track to acquire basic secondary education skills and will be shut out of economic opportunities. Without immediate action, 825 million of the 1.6 billion young people in 2030 will be left behind.

Raise your voice to ensure leaders keep their promises

Never has there been a more urgent calling to young people everywhere to raise their voice and help put an end to the scourge of 264 million children not in school.

Under the Millennium Development Goals more children gained access to education, but for many the quality of their learning experience was lacking – with millions leaving school unable to read, write, do simple math, and lacking skills needed for life.

This unfinished business saw global leaders commit to Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4): Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. With a target for governments to achieve the following by 2030:

  • To ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes.

However declining aid to education and insufficient education financing by developing country governments is leaving millions of children and young people behind.  Unless urgent action is taken, more children and young people will be recipients of broken promises by 2030, perpetuating the global learning crisis.

The stakes are high – leaders have the power to end the crisis

The stakes and the risks are too high: millions of children and young people not acquiring the skills and knowledge they need to thrive, create wealth, be well positioned for jobs in the 21st century economies.

Global action by world leaders has the power to end the global education crisis by 2030, and the GPE replenishment campaign is reminding them they have the power to make history in the following ways:

  • For donor governments:  provide US$3.1 billion to the GPE Fund over 2018-2020, thus helping reverse the downward trends of aid to education; and
  • For developing country governments: allocate at least 20% of government expenditure to education

The GPE Financing Conference on February 2, 2018 in Dakar is the opportunity for world leaders to mark the beginning of a new era in education financing and show a new commitment not just to the children of the developing world but to global security and prosperity.

GPE youth advocates call for global action

Building off the global youth movement and call for quality education, on November 20, Universal Children’s Day, GPE youth advocates will call on world leaders to #FundEducation and #ShapeTheFuture through various Facebook Live sessions. Many other young people around the world, including the UN Envoy for Youth will also be doing the same, using social media and writing letters to make their voice heard to world leaders.

Learn more about the 7 GPE youth advocates and discover their profiles.

Calling all youth to get involved!

With less than 3 months to go until the GPE Financing Conference, you too can take action: write to your head of state, join the campaign, and call for action now.

Here are a few other ways to GET INVOLVED!

The GPE replenishment campaign is calling on global citizens to take action to #ShapeTheFuture and #FundEducation by demanding increased financing in education – from donor governments, developing countries and the private sector. The campaign features key days of action encouraging global citizens to share their stories of how education shaped their futures and tag people who impacted their life. 

Author(s)

Advocacy and Partnerships Officer, Global Partnership for Education
Victoria Egbetayo is an Advocacy and Partnership Officer at the Global Partnership for Education, within the Southern Partnerships and External Relations Team, which leads GPE’s southern partnerships, advocacy...

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