Quality learning begins with teachers….

Even though we may still not have full agreement on what constitutes quality in education, we know that a skilled teacher , who is committed to all children learning well, no matter what their background or staring point may be, will be a treasure in any community.

Quality learning begins with teachers
Alice Albright, Chief Executive Officer, Global Partnership for Education

The new post-2015 education agenda should challenge us to accept that no goal can be considered met, until it is met for all. Inequity, discrimination and barriers to education must be eliminated. Achieving equity in education will require a focus on access and learning outcomes, aimed at the hardest to reach children. This goal is about quality, and the quality of an education system cannot rise above the quality of the teachers that stand in the classroom.

Click to read the full article.

and considering professional development for teachers:

4 Barriers to teachers’ professional development in fragile contexts
Mary Burns, senior technology specialist and professional development specialist, Education Development Center (EDC)

Teachers in fragile and crisis contexts face enormous barriers to quality professional development. This is not news to most readers. But what are these barriers and how can we begin to address or reverse engineer professional development? This post outlines some of these obstacles. Most of the information in this post is taken from research and from the discussions that informed the publication of the Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE) guide, Where it’s needed most: Quality professional development for all teachers.
Of course we want quality PD -but in many rural areas there may be no professional development, at all, unless teachers sign up for further study for promotion purposes.
What is needed is school based professional development facilitated by an experienced teacher, who has status in the school and is provided time to observe and  mentor fellow teachers.Reflective teaching approaches should be normal rather than rare.

Girls’ Education – – today’s challenges

Today’s challenges for girls’ education 
Brookings, Elizabeth King and Rebecca Winthrop

Educating a girl is one of the best investments her family, community, and country can make. We know that a good quality education can be life-changing for girls, boys, young women, and men, helping them develop to their full potential and putting them on a path for success in their life. We also know that educating a girl in particular can kick-start a virtuous circle of development. More educated girls, for example, marry later, have healthier children, earn more money that they invest back into their families and communities, and play more active roles in leading their communities and countries.

Over the last 25 years, there have been large gains in girls’ education, and we as a global community can congratulate ourselves for the real progress that has been made. This demonstrates that with shared goals and collective action—among governments, international organizations, civil society, media, and the private sector—we can change the educational prospects for girls around the world.

Click to read more and download this paper.

Assistive Products for Children with Disabilities Forum

Assistive Products for Children with Disabilities Forum
UNICEF

On 6-7 July 2015, in Copenhagen, UNICEF hosted its first-ever global meeting of staff, stakeholders and manufacturers to raise awareness, inspire and exchange knowledge on AT products that can bridge equity gaps for children with disabilities. Leading disability organizations and suppliers headlined the two-day gathering.

UNICEF is pleased to share information, presentations and publications related to the APCD forum. Please click on the links on the APCD webpage to access all of the resources, and do not hesitate to contact jhowe@unicef.org if more information is needed.

Education Infographics

Education Infographics

EFA GMR

The Education for All Global Monitoring Report (EFA GMR) team has produced dozens of new infographics to visually depict the challenges of achieving universal education. The infographics show “report cards” on the MDGs, figures on out-of-school children and youth, challenges facing learners in conflict settings, and key facts and figures about how financing gaps and opportunities.
infographics

Investing in Teachers is Investing in Learning

From INEE

Investing in Teachers is Investing in Learning

Ensuring that qualified, professionally trained, motivated, and well-supported teachers are available for all learners is essential for addressing today’s key education challenges in poor and rich countries alike. The quality of an education system can exceed neither the quality of its teachers nor the quality of its teaching.
investing in teachers

Investing in teachers can transform education and will be crucial for the effective delivery of a post-2015 education agenda that focuses on equity and learning. Teachers who have adequate subject and pedagogic content knowledge, are effectively trained, and are sensitive to the diverse needs of learners can make a huge difference on the education of students, especially in the early years of schooling. Governments must ensure teachers are appropriately prepared and supported – and development partners must focus their long-term technical and financial assistance efforts to build the capacity of countries that lack necessary resources.

Education and children, under fire – continuously!

Malala recently reminded us that just 8 days of global military spending could ensure all children are in school and receiving a level of quality in their education -too much to ask for? The military rarely has to go round with a begging bowl, but for health and education we are always expecting some sort of charitable hand out. It seems our brains are not evolving if we regard war as more important than health and education (and we could also throw in shelter and clean water as a couple more basics for all children).

INEE has brought together some articles that are food for thought -and hopefully action.

The War on Education

16 June 2015

by Silje S. Skeie, Special Advisor on Education at the Norwegian Refugee Council

2015 marks the year when all children should have been in school, according to the Millennium Development Goals. However, 58 million children are still out of primary school, and half of them live in countries affected by conflict.

At the same time: Never before have so many children been harmed, kidnapped or killed simply for going to school. Military use and attacks on schools have devastating impact on children’s access to education. Making schools safe must be a key priority on the post-2015 agenda.

Click to read the full article.

$2.3 billion required to send children to school in war-torn countries

29 June 2015

from Education For All Global Monitoring Report

A new paper by UNESCO’s Education For All Global Monitoring Report (EFA GMR) shows that 34 million children and adolescents are out of school in conflict-affected countries. The most vulnerable are the hardest hit: the poorest are twice as likely to be out of school as their counterparts in peaceful countries. The paper shows that $2.3 billion is required to place them in school – ten times the amount that education is receiving from humanitarian aid right now.

Click to read the full article.

Education in emergencies: world leaders told how to help 65 million children

23 June 2015

from A World at School

World leaders will be asked to consider a plan to tackle the lack of education action and funding for 65 million children caught up in conflicts and emergencies. With heads of government, education ministers and international organisations gathering at a summit in Norway next month, four major recommendations have been devised to meet the challenge.

The UK-based think tank Overseas Development Institute warns that millions of children are missing out on school, dropping out or receiving poor-quality education because of wars and conflicts, natural disasters including earthquakes and floods, and public health emergencies such as Ebola.

Click to read the full article.

and of course, when children do get to school, such is the lack of understanding about the needs of children, they are often subjected to violence and humiliation…

The Good School Toolkit for reducing physical violence
The Lancet
The Good School Toolkit for reducing physical violence from school staff to primary school students: a cluster-randomised controlled trial in Uganda
Violence against children from school staff is widespread in various settings, but few interventions address this. We tested whether the Good School Toolkit—a complex behavioural intervention designed by Ugandan not-for-profit organisation Raising Voices—could reduce physical violence from school staff to Ugandan primary school children.