Aid aimed at war-torn countries

5th March 2010 at 00:00
Government earmarks #163;300 million for educational investment in 'conflict-affected and fragile' areas ahead of international conference

The UK is to target improving the education of children in war-torn countries, under a new strategy announced this week.

The focus will result in half the Government's bilateral education aid being spent on children in "conflict-affected and fragile" states, the Department for International Development (DfID) said.

The department's investment in education in developing countries will top #163;1 billion for the first time next year.

Half of its #163;600 million bilateral investment in education will go to countries affected by conflicts, including Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Eight million children are expected to benefit.

It will also give around #163;400 million to organisations such as the World Bank and the European Commission.

The plan comes ahead of a major international conference of development experts, organised by DfID, to look at how to get the Millennium Development Goals on track. The goals - agreed by developed countries 10 years ago - include one to ensure that all children receive at least a primary education by 2015.

DfID's Learning for All strategy pledges to build 15,000 new classrooms in a year, train 130,000 teachers and support more than 200 universities in Africa and Asia.

As well as getting more children into school, work will also be undertaken to improve the quality of education. The aim is to increase the ratio of children able to read after two years of schooling from one in 10 now, to half by 2015.

Another key focus will be encouraging more women to train as teachers. There will be improvements to school sanitation, the lack of which has been a barrier to girls getting an education, according to DfID.

Douglas Alexander, Secretary of State for International Development, said: "This new strategy marks a ground-breaking moment for the UK's effort to ensure every child goes to school.

"But it goes beyond just getting children into school. It sets out how we will help provide a well-rounded education to millions of children and young people, securing their future employment and helping them to be better off than their parents."

Marie Staunton, chief executive of Plan UK, a child-centred community development organisation, said: "We're delighted DFID has heeded our call for measures to help the world's poorest girls finish school."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now