In fact, we need parity at all levels of the Ministry because the evidence is clear that when there is parity in leadership, everyone does better. And we need the Ministry of Finance to fund this important work of the Ministry of Education: not just the chairs, tables and toilets, not just the teacher salaries and textbook publishing but the investment it will make to change the processes, change the budgets, change the people sitting around the table.
To make mandatory the collection and reporting of sex, age and disability disaggregated data. To hire gender and equity experts so they can identify why girls in this province are the most likely to never enroll and boys in that one drop out before secondary.
Why the attendance rates of children with disabilities has stagnated entirely and what it will take to talk about the needs of LGBTQI children at all. Answering these questions will make visible all those out-of-school children who are at risk of remaining invisible for the rest of their lives, especially to their national economies.
More importantly, it will allow us to respond to their needs, help them find value in who they are and enable them to take their rightful place in the world. This is how gender equality builds more peaceful, tolerant and more just societies. By addressing the gendered vulnerabilities of every child.
The donors who have stressed the importance of gender equality in their pledges to GPE know this. And they are pledging their support to GPE because GPE does too.
GPE’s 2025 strategy says: “GPE’s main goal is to accelerate access, learning outcomes and gender equality through equitable, inclusive, and resilient education systems fit for the 21st century” and lists as its first objective “strengthen gender-responsive planning and policy development for system-wide impact”.
The objective of that NGO in Bangladesh was to empower girls and 100% of its budget was used to keep girls in school. They were supported by donors but imagine how much more powerful the impact can be if this work is done by the Ministry of Education. And to support them in doing this work is the heart of the work GPE is rolling up its sleeves to do.
We applaud you, GPE for this bold yet critical ambition. And we, along with all our partners, put ourselves at your disposal to support you in achieving it.