By the numbers - Girls' education

25th October 2013 at 01:00

Girls are denied access to education in many countries, particularly in the most marginalised communities.

The United Nations decided in 2011 that 11 October would be the International Day of the Girl Child after a two-year campaign by children's charity Plan.

This year, the theme of the event was innovation. Improving transport facilities, providing science and technology courses and using mobile technology in remote areas were all highlighted as ways in which girls could be helped to access education.

The Because I Am a Girl campaign, run by Plan, aims to equip schools, train teachers and fund scholarships. It also works with families to raise awareness of the dangers of early and forced marriage.

"Empowering girls, ensuring their human rights and addressing the discrimination and violence they face are essential to progress for the whole human family," said UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon.

Teenager Malala Yousafzai, who was shot by the Taliban in Pakistan in 2012, is an outspoken campaigner for the right of girls and women to a quality education.

Women account for two-thirds of the world's 774 million adult illiterates*

Youth literacy rates**


Male 87.7% Female 78.6%


Male 91.9% Female 86.8%.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today