SDGs – could be a few decades late!


Education needs to fundamentally change if we are to reach our global development goals

The new Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report by UNESCO, released on 6 September, shows the vast potential for education to propel progress towards all global goals outlined in the new Sustainable Development Agenda (SDGs). But, if education is to fulfill that potential and meet the current challenges facing the planet, a seismic shift is needed in policy, purpose and practice.

There are a few vital changes necessary for education to deliver on our expectations. Firstly, there is an urgent need for progress in education to speed up. If current trends continue, the world will achieve universal primary education in 2042, universal lower secondary education in 2059 and universal upper secondary education in 2084. This means the world would be half a century late for the 2030 SDG deadline of universal primary and secondary education.

Read more of this post and access the full GEM Report


What is more shameful is that answers to reach that ‘seismic’ shift have been known about for decades, but political will and commitment , particularly in educating those living in poverty and rural areas, has been woefully lacking.

Arms production and sales, in many countries,  still exhibit such a force that undermine any prioritising in terms of education and health of the nation.

When will they ever learn?

The need for accelerated learning -new resources

Having witnessed the number of out of school children in rural communities in Tanzania, I have come to the understanding about the desperate need for accelerated learning. We have a number of tools, including mobile, that could and should be utilised to support learning at a distance, to ensure that those children and young people who happen to live too far away from a school , or live where barriers to easy walking (such as rivers, wild animals etc) can continue learning . Education needs to move towards children, not the reverse, as it it seems these learners are punished for their location for living. As children tend to suffer a lot of wasted time in school -it should not be difficult to accelerate learning in an efficient and cost effective way.

Pocket Guide on Accelerated Education Programmes
Inter-agency Accelerated Education Working Group (AEWG)Globally, over 121 million children and adolescents are out of school, having never started or dropped out after enrolment. The most vulnerable and marginalised – often displaced children and young people, ex-combatants, girls and children with disabilities – are more likely to find it difficult to get an education. 51% of refugees are under 18, and only half of refugee children are in primary school.

For children and young people who have missed out on education or had their education interrupted by conflict and crisis, poverty and marginalisation, accelerated education programmes (AEPs) are a way to realise this commitment. AEPs offer equivalent certified competencies to primary education, enabling a return to formal education at appropriate grades, or transition into work or other training.

This guide is for those who finance, plan, design, manage and evaluate AEPs, including NGOs, community-based organisations (CBOs), government education authorities, and other education actors. The guide should be useful to programme managers, education advisers, policy makers, and anyone seeking to improve inclusive, quality education in contexts affected by crisis and conflict.

Click to read and download this resource. 

Webcast on Accelerated Education
USAID ECCNWebcastUSAID ECCN, in partnership with the Inter-Agency Accelerated Education Working Group (AEWG), hosted a webcast on June 9 featuring a first preview of the AEWG’s Accelerated Education pocket guide, featuring 10 key principles of Accelerated Education. Presenters covered the development, importance and potential application of the Accelerated Education pocket guide and an overview of the 10 principles to guide development and implementation of Accelerated Education programming.If you missed the webcast you can view the recording, access resources and participate in an ongoing discussion on the USAID ECCN website.