Dear Secretary of State,
Global education is at a critical moment. While some great progress has been made, 264 million children and young people missed out on an education in 2015, according to UNESCO – a figure unchanged since 2012. In places like South Sudan, a young woman is more likely to die in childbirth that she is to finish secondary school. This is unacceptable.
If current trends continue, Global Goal 4 to ‘ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’ will not be achieved this century.
Meanwhile, global funding to education is declining just when we need it most. The annual financing gap between available domestic resources and the amount necessary to reach the new targets is estimated to be around US $39 billion between 2015 and 2030.
Failing to invest in education today will not only deny millions of children the opportunity to reach their potential, but could slow economic growth, worsen social tensions and increase insecurity for generations to come.
The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) is working to hard to prevent this, uniting government leaders in low-income countries with international donors, the private sector and communities. Together, they develop, fund, and build lasting systems to educate the most vulnerable children, from preschool to secondary school.
I am proud that the UK is a global leader on education and a long-standing supporter of the GPE. This year you have the opportunity to demonstrate that leadership to the world.
As you may know, the GPE’s 2018-2020 replenishment campaign will culminate in a Financing Conference on 2 February 2018 in Dakar, Senegal. They are calling on US $3.1 billion from donors.
This money will help transform the lives of over 25 million children, will see 1.7 million teachers trained, will build 23,800 classrooms, and will see 204 million textbooks distributed worldwide.
With this in mind, I writing to call on the UK to step up their support and make a bold commitment of $500 (£380 million at current exchange rates) at the Financing Conference and encourage other donors to match this level of ambition. This amount would include existing support to the ‘leverage fund’.
If like me, you believe that education counts, please support the GPE. Working in partnership, we can help get millions of children in school and realising their potential.
SW8 1SJ London
+44 20 7793 email@example.com
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