World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


27 million children out of school in four Asian countries

UNICEF and UNESCO Institute for Statistics study reveals staggering number of children out of school in South Asia and reasons for exclusion

Kathmandu (29 JANUARY 2014) – A new study released today by UNICEF’s Regional Office for South Asia and the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) finds that a staggering 27 million children between the ages 5-13 are out of school in four countries of South Asia.

The “Global Initiative on Out-of-School Children – South Asia Regional Study covering Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka” shows there are 17 million primary school-age children who are not in school in these four countries. Another 9.9 million lower secondary school-age children are also not attending school bringing the total to 27 million.

Despite such figures impressive achievements in improving basic school enrolment rates have been seen in these countries over the past decade, notably in Sri Lanka where there are only 70,000 children out of school.

The study is part of the global initiative launched in 2010 by UNICEF and UIS. The goal of the initiative is to make a significant and sustainable reduction in the number of children out of school around the world.

Out of the 26 participating countries globally, the four South Asia countries took part in the first phase of the initiative. The South Asia study aims to understand the scale of the problem in the four countries and in the region.

“Children who are not in school lose the opportunity to learn and this takes a huge toll on the rest of their lives. No school, no school records and therefore invisible children for decision makers,” said Karin Hulshof, Regional Director of UNICEF in South Asia.

“We hope this study will equip countries with the knowledge and methodology to better understand who the children excluded from education are, eventually resulting in better solutions to the problem,” she added.

The study shows that deeply entrenched inequalities are the main roadblocks keeping children out of school in South Asia. Reasons for children being out of school include poverty, social and cultural norms, conflict, emergencies and disasters. Children from rural areas, particularly girls, and from urban slums, ethnic minorities, children with disabilities and child labourers face the greatest risk of being denied their right to education. This information is crucial for making informed policies and decisions to reach these excluded children.

“By better identifying who these children are and the challenges they face, we can take concrete and effective steps to reach them,” said Albert Motivans, Head of Education Indicators and Data Analysis at the UIS.

Based on findings, the study urges policy makers to:

• ensure that children out of school or at risk of dropping out receive special attention and more resources from the Ministries of Education

• ensure sufficient and quality education programs in which children out of school can participate

• ensure more and better schooling together with social protection schemes such as scholarships to address multiple barriers to schooling

The release of the study coincides this year with the 25th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). On this occasion, UNICEF will also launch the State of the World’s Children 2014 in Numbers: Every Child Counts – Revealing disparities, advancing children’s rights. These publications are valuable references and drivers for change for the hardest to reach and most vulnerable children.

Full report available.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Israel’s Demolition Of Palestinian Homes

Makarim Wibisono, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories. UN Photo/Violaine Martin More>>

ALSO:

  • Palestinian Centre For Human Rights - Israeli Settlers Continue Their Attacks against Palestinians
  • Tribespeople Call On WWF To Stop Funding Abuse

    This Baka man from Ndongo village reported that he was severely beaten by anti-poaching squads on two occasions. His neighbors have appealed to WWF to stop funding such abuses. More>>

    Ebola: UN Crisis Response Mission Opens New Office In Mali

    Workers build an enclosure at the Mayagba Ebola community care centre construction site in Bombali District, which is among the areas worst affected by the disease in Sierra Leone. Photo: UNICEF/John James More>>

    ALSO:

    UNESCO Chief Denounces Murder Of Somali Radio Journalist

    Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova. UN Photo/Devra Berkowitz More>>

    Palestinian Refugees From Syria Face Worsening Situation

    Palestinian women at a UNRWA distribution centre in the Jaramana refugee camp, Damascus, Syria. Photo: UNRWA/Carole Alfarah More>>

    ALSO:

    Greece Risks Prolonged Social Crisis

    Greece’s severe financial crisis has bred social unrest and intolerance of the nearly one million irregular migrants living in the country (October 2012). Photo: IRIN/Kristy Siegfried More>>

    Madagascar: Warning Of ‘rapid’ Spread Of Plague In Capital

    Ny Hantra Andriatsifasoa survived the bubonic plague after being infected in Madagascar in 2011. Photo: IRIN/Tiana Randriaharimalala More>>

    New Bird Flu Strain In Europe Threatens Poultry Sector

    24 November 2014 – The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO ) today warned that a new bird flu strain detected in Europe poses a significant threat to the poultry sector, especially in low-resourced countries situated along ... More>>


    Get More From Scoop

     
     
     
     
     
    World
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news