Is Global Education Leaving Young Girls Behind?

Jun 8, 2017 12:04:41 PM Catherine Sylva

Gender equality is a global priority on the road to achieving the Global Education Initiatives. Providing girls with an education helps break the cycle of poverty as educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and most importantly, more likely to send their children to school (UNICEF, 2017).

The end of 2016 attested great progress in education overall. Literacy rates among youth (aged 15 to 24) and adults increased, thanks to the expansion of educational opportunities. Globally, the youth literacy rate increased from 83% to 91% over two decades, while the number of illiterate youth declined from 170 million to 115 million (Children Fund UNICEF, 2016). Girls participation in school sports has even increased at all levels, which indicates the way society has become more accepting and tolerant when it comes to gender parity. However, it is hard to believe that in 2017, more than 493 million girls still can’t read, which explains the reason why two thirds of illiterate adults are women. How come literacy among youth is rising, and young women lag behind?

It is high time for a change regarding Global Female Education. It is important to empower girls in school by improving their learning systems. The best way to empower girls is via education; however, it will demand even greater attention to social emotional learning and innovation within programmatic approaches in education. It is never too late to learn how to read and write, and quality schooling is mandatory for all. Reaching the unreached through education by creating new methods and learning tools can be considered as an efficient way to give millions of girls a chance. Education is not a privilege, it is a right. The pursuit of happiness is not an advantage, it is a right. When will those two components become universal and accessible for everybody?