Nigeria has highest number of school drop-outs – UN

16 Views Comment Off

The United Nations Scientific, Educational and Cultural Organisation Institute for Statistics has said that the number of out of school children dropped slightly in 2012, compared to 2011.

This was contained in a report released by UNESCO at the UN Headquarters in New York on Monday and signed by Director-General of UNESCO, Irina
Bokova.

The report said 57 million children were out of school in 2011, which was lower by two million children when compared to the figures in 2010.

According to the report, the challenge of getting more children into school is being compounded by the fact that aid to basic education decreased for the first time in more than a decade.

“We are at a critical juncture, now is not the time for aid donors to back out,” Bokova said.

Bokova said the world must move beyond simply helping children enter school to ensuring that they actually learnt the basic literacy and numeracy
skills when they were at school.

UNESCO said at least one out of every four children that do enrol stayed in school, adding that the figure had not changed since 2000.

The report said that about 137 million children began primary school in 2011 but at least 34 million were likely to drop out before reaching the last grade.

According to UNESCO, the figure dropped to one out of three students in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and West Asia, which have the highest rate of early
school drop-outs.

Bokova said: “Our twin challenge is to get every child in school by understanding and acting on the multiple causes of exclusion and to ensure they learnt with qualified teachers in healthy and safe
environments.

“Aid to basic education declined by six per cent between 2010 and 2011. Six of the top education donors that year cut
funding, among them Canada, the Netherlands and the World Bank (IDA), leaving the UK as the largest bilateral donor to basic education.”

The report called on donors to prioritise countries and regions most in need.

The report said only $1.9 billion was allocated to low income countries in 2011, making it a reduction of nine per cent and significantly short of the $26 billion needed to fill the financial gap for basic education.

It added that countries in sub-Saharan Africa accounted for more than half of all out-of-school children.

The report said: “Aid to Nigeria for example, the country that is home to the largest number of out of school children in the world, dropped by more than a quarter from 2010 to 2011.

“More than 20 per cent of African children have never attended primary school or have left school without completing primary education.

“By contrast, countries in South and West Asia, which also have high drop-out rates, have made considerable gains over the past two decades, reducing the number of out-of-school children by two-thirds from 38 million in 1999 to 12 million in 2011.”

From Nigeria comes another report that the UNESCO Education for All Global Monitoring Report on Monday said that Nigeria accounted for almost a fifth of the worlds out-of-school children.

This was contained in a statement issued by Kate Redman, Communications Specialist, Education for All Global Monitoring Report of UNESCO in Abuja.

According to the statement, the amount of aid to basic education Nigeria received in 2011 was 28 per cent lower than it received in 2010.

“It is in the top 10 countries for the largest decrease in aid from 2010-2011,” the statement by Redman said.

The statement said that a new statistics show that 57 million children were out of school globally in 2011, which was a drop of two million from 2010.

It said that aid to basic education had decreased for the first time since 2002, adding that the world must move beyond helping children enter school to also ensure that they learn the basics there.

Redman said in the statement that, “Our twin challenge is to get every child in school by understanding and acting on the multiple causes of exclusion and to ensure they learn with qualified teachers in healthy and safe environments.”

It called on donors to renew their commitments so that no child would be out of school due to lack of resources.

According to the statement, the new figures released by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics show that countries in sub-Saharan Africa account for more than half of all out-of-school children and have the highest out-of-school rate.

The statement said that more than 20 per cent of African children had never attended primary school or left school without completing primary
education.

It said, “By contrast, countries in South and West Asia have made considerable gains over the past two decades, reducing the number of out-of-school children by two-thirds from 38 million in 1999 to 12 million in 2011.

“Children from poor households are three times as likely to be out of school as children from rich households.”

It added that girls from poor households in rural areas were among the children facing the greatest barriers to education.

The statement said that although more children now entered school, there had been little progress in reducing the rate at which they leave.

The statement said, “About 137 million children began primary school in 2011 but at least, 34 million are likely to drop out before reaching the last grade.

“This translates into an early school leaving rate of 25 percent, the same level as in 2000.”

According to the statement, Sub-Saharan Africa, South and West Asia have the highest rate of early school leaving.

“New interventions are required to reduce this rate in order to achieve universal primary education and ensure that every child acquires basic literacy and numeric skills,” it said.

The statement said that “while out-of-school figures are stagnant, new analysis from the EAGMR reports finds that aid to basic education declined by six percent between 2010 and 2011.”

It also noted that funds were not directed to the regions and countries most in need, adding that only $1.9 billion (about N296.4 billion) was allocated to low income countries in 2011.

The report, however, urged donors to prioritise countries and regions most in need as sub-Saharan African accounted for more than half of out-of-school children.

In : Education

Related Articles