International Day of Education

International Day of Education

Celebrating International Day of Education, 24 January 2021

Today we celebrate the UNESCO-backed International Day of Education, which supports the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4, to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.”

This year, we are encouraged to look beyond the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic on education to discover ways in which we can “recover and revitalise education for the COVID-19 generation.”

Why should we care?

School closures for Covid-19 kept 90% of all students out of school, reversing years of progress on education. Inequalities in education have been exacerbated – in low income countries, children’s school completion rate is 79% in the richest households, but only 34% in the poorest.
Shockingly, UNESCO also tells us that over 11 million girls around the world may not go back to school after the COVID-19 crisis. This puts them at risk of adolescent pregnancy, early and forced marriage, and violence. Just one more year of school can increase a girl’s earnings, when she is an adult, by up to 20%. Facts about female education from UNESCO

What can we do?

  • Join the campaign: Consider reading UNESCO’s handy youth advocacy toolkit to assist you in taking action to help students return to school globally. Join the campaign to ensure we build back equal. Your voice counts and can make a difference!
  • Share your testimony! Watch the videos of students, teachers and parents from the UNESCO Associated Schools Network who have shared their stories on coping and continuing to learn during lockdown. Find out how to share your testimonies too: #LearningNeverStops.
  • Join our Global Citizenship Club when we are back in school. Run by Mr MacMullan, the club raises finances and supports children at school in Lolobi Ashambi, Ghana.

Our testimony: #LearningNeverStops

By Becky F, Year 12

“In July 2019, a group of Sexey’s students embarked on a trip to Nepal. Following a walking expedition, we stopped to volunteer at a school near Kathmandu. While we were there, we helped to start the building of a playground for the students, to give them somewhere to release energy and in turn, focus more effectively in lessons. Sexey's students at a school in Nepal, watching dancing

“During our visit, we celebrated their National Teachers’ Day with the school community, and I was inspired by the way in which education is valued so highly and appreciated. It helped me to reflect on something that we often take for granted as a free and universal human right. To see the joy in the students and their burning eagerness to learn, discover and open doors to their future inspired me to make the most out of all opportunities. Therefore, even though the doors to our homes are closed due to COVID-19, the doors in our minds should stay open and optimistic. This as well as UNESCO’s alarming statistics should spur us to take advantage of our opportunity to keep learning at home and online as the #LearningNeverStops ! I’d encourage everyone to read more and to support their campaign for this International Day of Education.”