Kofi Annan on Girls' Schooling

From: edequity@phoenix.edc.org
Date: Mon May 08 2000 - 10:36:40 EDT

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    Forwarded from Aviva by Linda Purrington, Title IX Advocates,

    Kofi Annan Demands Action on Girls' Schooling - In Vain
    Source: BBC World Service, 28.4.00 Website: http://www2.unesco.org/wef

    UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, opening the World Education Forum
    meeting in Dakar in April,accused politicans of failing
    children--particularly girls--and ignoring human rights. He did not hide
    his frustration that communities are being denied a future labour force
    of healthy, literate, and employable citizens. The Forum was unable to
    give a good report on its promise in Thailand in 1990 "to provide
    primary schooling for all by the year 2000." On the contrary, 125
    million children have never been to school, and another 150 million have
    been forced to drop out of education in the past decade
    before they can read or write - two thirds of the excluded are girls.
    There have been some advances, particularly in Asia, but lack of action
    in general means that the poorest 1 billion in the world remain
    uneducated. Education activists blame the complacency of political and
    financial elites, who refuse to spend the required $8 billion--the
    equivalent of 4 days of global defence spending--that would provide
    free education for all. Sub-Saharan Africa, with over 40 million
    children not in school, spent on average $12 billion a year on debt
    repayments in the 1990s, three times the amount spent on education. In a
    recent review of 16 countries, 12 had cut education budgets. India, with
    more children out of school than any other country, spends twice as much
    on arms as on basic education. Pakistan, with a huge gender gap in
    education, spends 6 times as much. The leaders of UN agencies, 181
    government delegates, the head of the World Bank and other global
    financial institutes reaffirmed education as a
    basic human right - and made new pledge to achieve universal primary
    education--by 2015. But they failed to back an international action plan
    to commit more money to guarantee results--issuing instead a vague
    commitment of good intent.
    Source: BBC World Service, 28.4.00 Website: http://www2.unesco.org/wef

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