The United Kingdom and Kenya will co-host a high-level summit next year to lead global action to educate every child, Prime Minister Boris Johnson and President Uhuru Kenyatta announced Monday.
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.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has championed girls’ education as the key to preventing exploitation and unlocking potential around the world, and the UK is the top donor to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE).
“Education unlocks doors to opportunity and prosperity. It offers girls a ticket out of poverty and exploitation to chart their own futures,” Johnson said.
“That’s why 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.”
The Government of Kenya has made education a central part of their strategy to become a newly industrialised nation by 2030. A GPE partner since 2005, Kenya has made impressive gains, achieving universal primary education and breaking down gender barriers to get as many girls as boys enrolling in school.
“An educated population is a country’s most valuable resource. GPE has been a key partner in helping us invest in innovative solutions to get all our children, especially girls, learning,” Kenya’s Uhuru President Kenyatta. “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.”
The summit will take place in the UK in mid-2021 and will convene key global players and decision makers, with the aim of getting all children into school and learning.