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Many children in school are not learning: Unesco

Sep 24. 2017
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By The Nation

A report by the Unesco Institute for Statistics (UIS) reveals that most children who are not learning are in school.

According to its new report, of the 387 million primary school-age children unable to read proficiently, 262 million are in school. There are also about 137 million adolescents of lower secondary school age who are in classrooms but unable to meet minimum proficiency levels in reading. 

“The waste of human potential signalled by the new data confirms that getting children into the classroom is only half the battle,” says Silvia Montoya, director of the UIS. “Now we must ensure that every child in that classroom is learning the basic skills they need in reading and mathematics, as a minimum.”

As many as 617 million children and adolescents worldwide are not achieving minimum proficiency levels in reading and mathematics.

According to the UIS, this figure signals “a learning crisis” that could threaten progress towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The new paper highlights the depth of the challenges remaining in the Asia-Pacific education, particularly in Central and Southern Asia, which has the second-highest rate of children and adolescents not learning worldwide.

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