Education International
Education International

Education beats poverty

published 29 March 2010 updated 29 March 2010

This year’s Global Action Week will focus on adequate funding for education and will have the slogan “Financing quality public education: a right for all.” Global Action Week will take place from 19 to 25 April, a key moment exactly 10 years after the adoption in Dakar of the Education for All objectives and the Millennium Development Goals.

But the EFA objectives will not be achieved at the current pace, despite progress made, particularly because of the failure of the international community to fulfil its financial commitments. This situation has been worsened by the impact of the economic, financial and social crises that have led certain donors to reduce their levels of aid. The year 2010 is therefore crucial as decisions must be taken in order to reverse the situation and accelerate the process. Thanks to our joint action, we can influence and contribute to the achievement of our objective by 2015: that every child in the world should be able to attend school and receive a quality education. In order to maximise efforts and the opportunities available, the Global Action Week will be closely linked to the campaign called “1GOAL: Education For All,” which is being organised around the World Cup of Football that will take place for the first time in June and July in South Africa. The 1GOAL campaign was officially launched in October 2009 during a satellite-linked ceremony led by the 2010 FIFA World Cup host, South Africa President Jacob Zuma; Her Majesty Rania Al-Abdullah, Queen of Jordan; President of Ghana John Atta Mills; UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown; Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, President of Spain; Jan Peter Balkenende, Prime Minister of the Netherlands; Kevin Rudd, Prime Minister of Australia; Hillary Clinton, the US Secretary of State; Ban Ki-Moon, the UN Secretary General; and Sepp Blatter, the FIFA President. The 1GOAL campaign has also attracted strong support from many famous football players and celebrity ambassadors including Colombian-born singer and philanthropist Shakira. More importantly than all these, however, is the fact that it has captured the attention and passion of thousands upon thousands of teachers, who intend to help the Global Campaign for Education to set another world record for the biggest lesson ever taught. The Big Lesson will be taught on 20 April in more than 100 countries, with football stars joining millions of children to support the appeal. EI and the GCE hope to send a powerful message to world leaders through the event. Our main message is simple: Education beats poverty. Activists involved in the campaign will be putting pressure on world leaders to end poverty by providing education to the 72 million children still out of school. EI and the GCE also welcome the news that there will be a summit on education held as part of the World Cup.

This article was published in Worlds of Education, Issue 33, March 2010.