Statement by Education Cannot Wait Director Yasmine Sherif for the Transforming Education Summit
Leaders from across the world are uniting at the UN Secretary-General’s Transforming Education Summit to address a global education crisis that threatens to derail decades of development gains and is depriving millions of girls across the world of their inherent human right to access a quality education.
As we mobilize financial resources, listen to the world’s youth, identify needs and solutions, and work collectively to elevate education to the top of the global political agenda, we must not forget the 222 million crisis-impacted children and adolescents worldwide. They are left furthest behind and they urgently need our support. Education Cannot Wait’s ground-breaking analysis highlights that about 78 million of these crisis-impacted children are out of school, and close to 120 million are in school but not learning. These shocking figures cannot be allowed to represent the 21st century.
Caught in conflicts and protracted crises, displaced by climate change, and fighting to survive in some of the harshest and most inhumane conditions on the planet, these girls and boys need our urgent and unwavering support.
We need to unite in action to deliver on the commitments that will be made at this seminal Summit to ensure girls and boys in places like Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti, Pakistan, South Sudan, Syria, the Sahel, Ukraine, Yemen and beyond are guaranteed their human right of a 12-year quality education.
This is our commitment to ensure and improve equitable inclusive education and learning outcomes, to protect and improve external financing, to work together in the spirit of multilateral and organizational cooperation to build crisis-resilient education systems, and to scale and mainstream high-impact and evidence-based interventions into results and sustainable impact.
Education Cannot Wait, as the UN’s global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises, champions these transformational approaches designed to be responsive in the midst of brutal crises by delivering with humanitarian speed and developmental depth to ensure no child or adolescent is left behind.
We urge world leaders to make good on our promises as outlined in the Sustainable Development Goals, Charlevoix Declaration, Safe Schools Declaration and other international accords, and support us in realizing 222 Million Dreams for an education, and 222 Million Dreams to use that education to make the world a better one than the world in which they suffer today