Education for All on the right track finds Global Monitoring Report 2008 launched by UNESCO

3 December 2007

The 2008 Education for All (EFA) Global Monitoring Report was launched at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on 29 November. This year the report focuses on the mid-term assessment of where the world stands in meeting the EFA goals.

Key findings include:

• Out of 129 countries with data, 51 have achieved or are close to achieving the four most quantifiable EFA goals (universal primary education, adult literacy, gender and quality of education);

• The number of out-of-school children dropped to 72 million in 2005 from 96 million in 1999. A rapid decline in out-of-school figures has been seen since 2002. Thirty-five fragile states account for 37% of all out-of-school children;

• Primary education enrolment has improved since 2000, especially in regions with low enrolments but quality of education remains a problem. Sub-national disparities in school participation continue to persist in many countries, including in Nepal, Bangladesh and India;

• The gender parity goal has been missed; only about one-third of countries reported parity in both primary and secondary education in 2005. Boys participation and underachievement are of growing concern in secondary education;
• 774 million adults worldwide lack basic literacy skills, some 64% of them are women

• 18 million new primary teachers are needed by 2015. Teacher shortages remain a problem, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, and South and West Asia. Pupil/trained teachers ratios are above 100 in Afghanistan, Chad, Madagascar, Mozambique and Nepal;

• Measures to expand ECCE are in place but there is a lack of policies for children under the age of three and ECCE programmes are not reaching the poorest and most disadvantaged children, especially in developing countries;
• Given the results, the GMR recommends five policy priority areas: inclusion, quality, literacy, capacity development, financing

The report is available in English, Russian version will be available in early 2008. Short summary of the report and press release are available on the website.

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