Kenya, UK to host global summit on education

President Uhuru Kenyatta and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson have urged world leaders to invest in children education as they rebuild from Coronavirus.

The two spoke in readiness for the major Education summit slated for next year, which will be co-hosted by Kenya and the UK.

The 2021 summit will raise funds for the Global Partnership for Education, which intends to raise at least US$5 billion for education in the world’s most vulnerable countries.

The high-level summit will initiate global action to educate every child, targeting those from marginalized Countries.

In a statement, the leaders say, ’’Coronavirus has worsened the global education crisis, with 1.3 billion children – including 650 million girls – out of education at the peak of school closures. Experts warn that many children will never return, particularly as countries experience an economic contraction in the wake of the pandemic.’’

Prime Minister Boris Johnson says girls’ education is the key to preventing exploitation and unlocking potential around the world.

The UK is the top donor to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), and next year’s summit will raise funds for GPE’s vital work in developing countries helping to get children into school, lift communities out of poverty and prevent girls being forced into child marriage.

“Since coronavirus struck, the number of children out of school around the world soared past 1.3 billion. It is a toll of wasted potential and missed opportunity that is a tragedy not just for those children, but for each and every one of us.’’ He said.

Johnson said education unlocks doors to opportunities and prosperity and will offer girls a ticket out of poverty and exploitation.

“I am delighted that the UK will co-host the replenishment of the Global Partnership for Education in 2021. I urge the global community to come together, dig deep and ensure we fund their vital work to give every child the chance at an education.” He said.

President Uhuru on the other hand said an educated population is a Country’s most valuable resource.

“We must use the opportunity of GPE’s financing conference to make ambitious pledges to invest in quality education so our children and young people have the skills and knowledge they need to seize the opportunities of the 21st century.” He said.

According to statistics, 9 in 10 school children in low income countries were unable to read proficiently by the age of 10 even before the pandemic.

Since its creation in 2002, GPE has already contributed to getting 160 million more children in school and doubling girls’ enrollment in the countries they work in.

GPE Board Chair Julia Gillard, the former Prime Minister of Australia said, “An investment in GPE is an investment in the world’s most powerful asset – its children and youth. By refinancing GPE, leaders can send a clear message that the world is serious about creating a brighter future for all girls and boys through education.’’

“Today, we’re launching our most ambitious and urgent campaign yet. We must seize this opportunity to make sure that no child is left behind. Our message to world leaders is simple: Raise your hand. Fund education.” Gillard said.




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