Education overcame its latest hurdle to be included as one of the post-2015 development goals leading up to the UN General Assembly in September, where a vote will decide the priorities for the next 15 years.
The UN’s Open Working Group released what it calls its ‘Zero Draft’ of proposed sustainable development goals and targets for post-2015, and education has found a place on the list following the tireless efforts of Education International (EI), its affiliates and partner organisations to see it included. With only two Open Working Group meetings remaining until the UN General Assembly votes in the fall, the ‘Zero Draft’ is a near complete list of candidate goals to be considered.
Coming in at number four of 17 possible goals, education’s inclusion is a major step toward seeing it made a priority until at least 2030. However, according to EI, the exact wording of the education targets must be refined before the vote.
Specifically at issue is the wording of target 4.9 focusing on teachers, which reads: “ by 2030 enhance the quality of teaching through promoting training for teachers.” Finding the wording too vague and open to interpretation, EI has proposed an amendment to the language to make the target clearer, a revision already agreed to by the UNESCO Education for All (EFA) Steering Committee in Oman, last month.
Education International is working to see that the amended version, “ by 2030, all governments ensure that all learners are taught by qualified, professionally-trained, motivated and well-supported teachers,” finds its way into the document.
Education International has called upon affiliates to contact appropriate ministers and ministries to advocate for the revision, as well as two additional proposed targets:
“ By 2030, increase the recruitment, development and training and retention of teachers by x% and education support personnel by y% in developing countries, especially in LDCs,” and
“ By 2030, all countries allocate at least 4-6% of their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or at least 15-20% of their public expenditure to education, prioritizing groups most in need; and strengthen financial cooperation for education, prioritizing countries most in need.”
The 30-member Open Working Group will meet next from the 16-20 of June, and once more before the General Assembly from the 14-18 of July to finalise the list.
Proposed goal 4: Provide equitable and inclusive quality education and life-long learning opportunities for all
4.1: by 2030 ensure all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes
4.2: by 2030 ensure equal access for all to affordable quality tertiary education and life-long learning
4.3: by 2030 increase by x% the proportion of children able to access and complete inclusivequality pre-primary education and other early childhood development programmes
4.4: achieve universal youth literacy and basic numeracy and an increase by x% of adult literacy and basic numeracy by 2030
4.5: by 2030 increase by x% the number of young and adult women and men with the skills needed for employment, including vocational training, ICT, technical, engineering and scientific skills
4.6: by 2030 ensure that people in vulnerable situations and marginalized people including persons with disabilities and indigenous peoples have access to inclusive education, skills development and vocational training aligned with labour market needs
4.7: by 2030 integrate relevant knowledgeand skills in education curricula and training programs, including education for sustainable development and awareness raising on culture’s contribution to sustainable development
4.8: by 2030 ensure that all schools and other educational institutions provide safe, healthy, non-discriminatory and inclusive learning environments for all
4.9: by 2030 enhance the quality of teaching through promoting training for teachers