Despite the considerable progress in primary school enrolment between 2000 and 2014, 9 per cent of primary-school-aged children worldwide were still out of school in 2014.
According to the 2017 Sustainable Development Goals Report, in some regions, most notably sub-Saharan Africa, the lack of trained teachers and the poor condition of schools are jeopardizing the goal of quality education for all.
The report adds the following;
“In sub-Saharan Africa, schools often lack basic amenities long taken for granted in other parts of the world. Only around one quarter of schools in the region have electricity and less than half have access to basic drinking water. Although 69 per cent have toilets, many still lack separate sanitation facilities for girls and boys. Based on data from 65 developing countries, the median value of the percentage of schools with access to computers and the Internet for pedagogical purposes is above 70 per cent in both primary and secondary education. However, the proportion drops below 40 per cent for many countries in sub-Saharan Africa.”
In 2014, two thirds of children worldwide participated in pre-primary or primary education in the year prior to the official entrance age to primary school. In sub-Saharan Africa, the least developed countries and landlocked developing countries, the rate was only 4 in 10 children, versus 9 in 10 children in Europe and Northern America, and Latin America and the Caribbean.
Sometimes, the challenges behind determining the progress towards achieving Millennium Goals is due to the lack of data being collected, this is, again an issue in the sub-Saharan where, according to this report 2014 data is what was available to use.
While lifelong learning is a global issue, some countries are still faced with a deadlock in terms of data that can be used to improve the issues at hand, in this context, issues in education systems.
Mduduzi Mbiza is a writer, content strategist, researcher, consultant and author of the book, ‘Human Education: The Voyage of Discovery’. He has contributed his articles on education to Daily Maverick, The South African, Voice360 and EduOne.