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learnedly read, too; in part, of intellectual rigor
Posted Monday September 20, 2010
NAIROBI, Kenya - Somalia and Haiti are the two worst countries in which to be a
school child at a time when $4.6 billion has been cut from education budgets
worldwide, a new report released Monday said.
|Quake-hit Haiti, one of the
superbly poor countries that also faces
|By Jason Straziuso,
|Associated Press Writer
Chronic under-investment in education means that 69 million children are out of
school around the world, said the report released by the Global Campaign for
The report - "Back to School?" - said poor countries are "teetering on the brink
of an education crisis."
Of the five countries at the bottom of the list, four are in Africa, and three
of those are in East Africa. The ranking rated Somalia, Eritrea, Haiti, Comoros
and Ethiopia at the bottom five based on access to basic education,
teacher-student ratio, and educational provisions for girls.
Even Kenya, considered successful compared to its East African neighbors, had to
delay free education to 9.7 million children over the last year due to budgetary
constraints, the report said.
The report was produced by Education International, Plan International, Oxfam,
Save the Children and VSO.
World leaders meet at U.N. headquarters in New York this week to discuss the
Millennium Development Goals.
One of goals was for universal primary education, and the world's school
children have seen much progress over the last decade. The U.N. says the number
of children not in school has dropped from 106 million in 1999 to 69 million in
Sub-Saharan Africa has seen its classrooms fill over the last decade, though the
continent still accounts for almost half of the total of unenrolled children. In
1999, 58 percent of African children were enrolled in primary school. By 2008
the figure was 76 percent.
The Global Campaign for Education is calling on leaders meeting this week to
make education funding a priority so that the target of universal access to
primary education is met by 2015.
"If education budgets are not protected from the ravages of the financial crisis
all that progress could be jeopardized and generations will be condemned to
poverty," Gordon Brown, Britain's former prime minister, said in the report.
"For years the international community has acknowledged the fundamental role
education plays in development," he said. "Today it must back these words with
The U.N. children's agency said in new research ahead of the U.N. summit that
providing services to the world's poorest children is not only the right thing
to do, but also more cost-effective than the current policy of mainly helping
what it called the "less poor" in more-accessible areas.
UNICEF said its research shows that spending $1 million helping children age 5
and younger in the most remote and disadvantaged areas would prevent 60 percent
more deaths then the current approach, what it called "a stunningly higher
return on investment."
Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press
|Wehaitians.com, the scholarly journal of
democracy and human rights