UNICEF/UIS global initiative to reduce the number of children out of school
Data show that progress on reducing the number of children out-of-school has stalled. As of 2010, 61 million children of primary school age and another 71 million children of lower secondary school age were still out of school. There are also indications that progress towards universal primary education is slowing and that the goal will not be met by 2015 if current trends continue.
What is the role of the UIS and UNICEF in reducing the number of children out of school?
The UNICEF/UIS Global Initiative on Out-of-school Children is designed to accelerate efforts towards the goal of universal primary education by 2015. Policies and programmes to address the problem of exclusion from education and reduce inequalities remain inadequate in many countries. Moreover, there has been no systematic analysis to identify the bottlenecks on the path to universal primary education and explain why well-intentioned policies are not yielding robust results.
Underlying the policy gap is a data gap arising from the lack of adequate tools and methodologies to identify out-of-school children, monitor progress towards universal primary education, measure the scope of and assess the reasons for exclusion, and inform policy and planning. Above all, greater consensus is needed on estimates of the number children out of school. This requires improving the quality and consistency of data collected through administrative records and household surveys.