An amount of 38 billion USD is needed annually to achieve basic and lower secondary education of good quality for all children in poor countries, UNESCO reveals in its Education for All Global Monitoring report published today, just under 1 000 days before the 2015 deadline of achieving the Education for All goals.
“This shows that filling the finance gap for basic education and achieving potential new ambitious education goals post-2015 is possible if governments and donors prioritise allocating resources towards education, and specifically towards those most in need,” the Making Education for All affordable by 2015 and Beyond report said.
“Within this financing gap, 26 billion USD is needed annually solely to achieve basic education in poor countries.”
UNESCO said this gap has widened from 16 billion USD calculated in 2010 by the EFA Global Monitoring Report.
“Widening of the gap is primarily due to donor aid stagnating at only 3 billion USD to basic education annually denying millions of children an education.”
Ultimately, for education progress to be sustainable, national governments need to be able to fund their education systems, the report said.
“Even now, they provide around half of the overall resources needed. Their contributions could be further enhanced by tapping into the revenue from natural resources.
The EFA Global Monitoring Report said it has calculated that in 17 countries already rich in resources or with recently discovered deposits, revenue from natural resources could raise an additional 5 billion USD for education.
The new paper is released just days before the Global Meeting being hosted in Dakar discussing new education goals post-2015.
UNESCO said the private sector and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) currently give less than 200 million USD a year to basic education in poor countries, but also offer huge potential for financing more ambitious goals after 2015.
“The finance gap for basic and lower secondary education could be filled if China alone, the largest of the BRICS, were to reach the target of 0.7% of gross national income and allocate 20% of this to education,” the paper said.
Pauline Rose, director of the Education for All Global Monitoring Report, said: “The key lesson for goal-setting after 2015 is that we cannot take for granted that resources will be available to meet international commitments.
“Our key recommendation for those setting goals post-2015 is that they must include a new time-bound, measurable financing target to hold governments and donors and other funders to account for their promises of ensuring that no country is prevented from providing everyone with a good quality education due to a lack of resources.”