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The Millennium Development Goal to achieve gender equality in education can only be met by concerted action. Stronger partnerships are needed to increase opportunities for the millions of girls and women excluded from education, but what kind?
A book published by Oxfam GB documents and analyses the challenges and problems in building partnerships for girls’ education. For example, can local initiatives be replicated without losing the community involvement that contributed to their success? Is equal enrolment of boys and girls enough to promote gender-equitable education or contribute to women’s empowerment?
Of the 128 countries monitoring gender parity in education, 54 still have more boys than girls enrolled. In Ethiopia, Niger, Pakistan and Chad, for example, enrolment ratios for girls are two thirds of those for boys. Only 18 countries in Central and West Africa, South and West Asia and Arabic states have a realistic chance of achieving gender parity by 2015.
Authors examine global and regional partnerships to promote gender-equitable education through greater co-ordination. They include:
A large number of initiatives can create confusion. UNGEI has been overwhelmed by lack of funds, confusion about roles and responsibilities, disagreement whether engagement should be focused at the national or at the regional level and failure to link effectively with the FTI. Within the GCE there are disagreements about how to prioritise multiple interests – those of teachers and poor communities, for example.
It is important to recognise that:
‘Partnerships for Girls’ Education’, edited by Nitya Rao and Ines Smyth, Oxfam GB, 2005 Full document.
Funded by: Oxfam GB
id21 Research Highlight: 20 March 2006
School of Development Studies
University of East Anglia
Norwich NR4 7TJ
+44 (0)1603 592333
Contact the contributor: email@example.com
International Policy Department
274 Banbury Road
Oxford OX2 7DZ
+44 (0)1865 313939
Contact the contributor: ismyth@Oxfam.org.uk
Other related links:
'Understanding cross-sector partnerships for development'
'Missing the targets: poor progress on the MDGs'
'Closing gender gaps in education: lessons from good practice'
United Nations Girls' Education Initiative (UNGEI)
Girls’ Education: Working with Partners to Meet the Challenge from the World Bank