Did you know?
Even though the average percentage of Children out of school is declining over the years, studies showed that almost 20% of children in low-income countries and 10% in lower middle-income countries are still out of primary school in 2021.
What are these children doing?
The highest % of children in employment is found in the low-income countries, followed by the lower middle-income countries where the highest % of children out of school coexists.
This shows that these countries cannot afford the education of their children and thus shift them to work instead in order to support their families’ living expenses.
Who should we blame?
While these countries have the lowest income, they score the highest birth rates compared to other countries as shown below.
The low-income countries have a 44% birth rate reflected by their ignorance on the importance of birth control and contraceptive prevalence with only 23%.
Is 23% enough? No.
Children have the right to be educated, and a big responsibility falls on the parents who give birth to children and force them to work, knowing that they cannot afford their education.
The access to electricity and internet usage across the years has been increasing in all the countries including the low-income ones.
However, it is important to highlight that with all this increase, only 40% of the population in low-income countries have access to electricity and only 21% of them use the internet in 2020.
This evolution has pushed the adult literacy rate across the years to increase.
The more the adults have literacy and can surf through internet facilities, the more they understand the importance of children education and therefore decreasing the % of children out of school.
The main reason behind the decrease in % of children out of school through years is the increase in education expenditures in primary public institutions, along with the increase in access to electricity and internet usage which facilitates the education feasibility for the children and the adults literacy in these countries.
Knowing that the low-income countries cannot afford the education of their children, while their birth rate is increasing, the Department of Economic and Social Affairs in the United Nations should ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all #SDG4 #SDG4.1 by supporting these countries through funding the tuition fees of their children along with educating the parents on the importance of contraceptive prevalence and maybe set regulations in collaboration with the governments to limit the birth rate allowed in the low income countries.
Education is the pillar of society. Education is the only way to a good life. Education is the future.
But do it smartly.
With every generation coming on, every aspect of life is changing whether it’s the way you communicate with others, how you move from one place to another, EVERYTHING. Continuous learning will always show good results, either in the short term or the long term. However, one must not overdo it. Looking back at the last two decades, humanity has experienced several major events, COVID having the biggest impact. As businesses shut down, lockdowns and social distancing imposed, numerous people found themselves jobless, regardless what their experience or level of education is.
We can see on the map how unemployment rates have been increasing around the world in the last decade, especially in the last two years when COVID had a heavy impact. To dig deeper into the level of education of unemployed individuals, we can see in the second graph how individuals with basic, intermediate, and advanced education faced an increase in unemployment rates between 2019 and 2020. This graph shows had advancement in education has led to lower unemployment rates, hence showing the impact that higher education had during the COVID crisis where firms were cutting down on expenses by keeping individuals who can handle a heavier load. In the Education graph, we can see how figures for most educational levels have increased in 2020. This shows how the pandemic has reminded people of the importance of continuous education, however, the impact of this increase was not seen directly.
Continuing education is definitely a great plan for people to follow in order to keep improving and moving forward in their careers, lives, or personal growth. However, one should allocate enough time and effort to decide on the next step they are planning to take as the pandemic has shown us how some people with specific levels of education in certain fields are irreplaceable. More awareness should be shared with people of all ages, to show them the importance of education, and more importantly how to decide the optimal path for them.
“When children must split their time between fetching water and protecting their families’ greatest wealth, the livestock, their education suffers” Marco Prates
Meet Marta Ndimaoshitya:
Marta is a 12-year-old educated girl. “Educated?”, You might say. “Then what’s the problem?”, you might wonder. Well, the problem isn’t with Marta, it’s with Marta’s 3 siblings who have dropped out of school because there is no water for them to undertake the long walk to reach the school. The only reason Marta is able to go to school is that it is close to her home. You might have thought of many reasons why they are unable to receive proper education, but I doubt this one would have crossed your mind. Unfortunately, many children around the world live a life similar to Marta’s siblings and even worse.
The below visualization will offer a clear sight of the countries that are suffering from children being out of school the most. I wish to shed light on these countries as the aim is not just to know the number of school dropouts, it is also to help solve the major factors that render this behind each specific country.
Countries like Libya, Nigeria, Chad, Ghana, and many more experience very high numbers of children out of school. Some of the factors that render this are poverty, gender inequality, child marriage, lack of access to clean water, and armed conflict.
Raise awareness on the importance of education
Provide financial support for poor families
Provide flexible, affordable, high-quality school options
Educate a girl, change the world – Malala Yousafzai
Being a young lady and living in Lebanon, we always heard stories of women being beaten up, tortured, or killed by their husbands from our family members or friends. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), “Nearly half of women who die due to homicide are killed by their current or former husbands or boyfriends.” Many articles are bringing to light this issue especially with the start of the Covid19 pandemic, where we have seen a spike in that subject due to quarantine and home stays.
As generations, we have progressed in many fields, but we are still lacking a lot in that domain. How is that possible? One main reason for domestic violence’s on-going presence is that, on average, 37.75% of women around the world believe that a husband is justified in beating his wife (percentage from 2000 till 2020). That’s a huge number! Many women justify this type of violence as “normal’” and give the right to their partners/ husbands to beat them. But why are women justifying and accepting domestic violence? Why is that number this high nowadays?
To dig deep into the subject, I decided to evaluate potential factors that could affect women’s decision in justifying domestic violence such as poverty levels, literacy rates, and early marriages rates around the world. It was found that:
On average, 75.96% of Female aged 15+ are literate around the world (from 2000 till 2020)
On average, 3.63% of the global population live under Poverty Gap at $1.90 a day (from 2000 till 2020)
On average, 6.78% of Female between 20 and 24 years old married at the age of 15 around the world (from 2000 till 2020)
The results showed that countries with low literacy rates in female adults have higher percentages of women who believe that a husband is justified in beating his wife (stand with domestic violence) such as Ethiopia who has a low literacy rate of 28.53% in female adults and a very high percentage of women who justify their husband’s violence (74.23%).
On the poverty level, it was found that countries with higher poverty gaps rates have higher percentages of women who stand with domestic violence such as Congo who has a poverty gap of 51.7% and a very high percentage of women who justify their husband’s violence (75.2%).
Also, when comparing that percentage with the percentage of women who married at the age of 15, it was found that countries with higher numbers of early marriages have higher percentages of women who stand with domestic violence such as Chad who has a percentage of early marriage of 29.47% (of female between 20-24 have married at the age of 15) and a very high number of women who justify their husband’s violence (67.9%).
Poverty, Literacy rates, and Early Marriages in the country affect heavily the perception of women in whether domestic violence by their partners is acceptable or not. High poverty rates increase the justification of domestic violence, low literacy rates increase the justification of domestic violence, and high early marriages rates increase the justification of domestic violence.
Increasing educational benefits in underprivileged countries would be a great initiative to increase literacy rates among women and stopping abuse among families. Introducing educational programs such as Girls’ Education by the World Bank Group which focuses on ensuring that young women receive a quality education, and raising awareness about physical abuse would also encourage the fight against domestic violence. Some countries such as Indonesia have increased the age of marriage of adolescent girls which would contribute to less early marriages, and less acceptance of violence.
Meet Denis Mukwege, medicine graduate, founder of the the Panzi Hospital in Bukavu, a 2018 Nobel prize winner for his effort “to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.”
Now meet Thato Zungy, a school dropout, grew up to face prison after being addicted to drugs and being involved with gangsters
Two different educational backgrounds, Two different paths, Two different influence on the society
Due to the huge benefits that it brings to the individual development and the society as a whole, Education is a crucialmatter that pushed UNICEF to declare a national emergency to deal with the shocking 80 million childrendropping out of school without completing the basic schooling, despite the global efforts to promote primary education
The map below shows the top 40 countries with the highest average of Children out of school. As shown, 38 out of the 40 countries are in Africa, with Somalia recording the highest average of all (83.92)
Despite the efforts that some government make to promote primary education, some countries still witness a high average of dropouts from primary schooling. The bar chart shows the percentage of expenditure on primary education out of the government expenditure on education compared to the average children out of school. Haiti is among the top countries in Average Expenditure on primary education out of the government expenditure on education (64.9%), and still, its ranked 7th in the world with the highest average of drooped out(54.40%)
According to the UNICEF wars and disasters, discrimination based on gender, child marriage are factors that keep the children out of schools. Poverty is also considered a main barrier to education, where children are forced into employment at a very young age to accommodate the living demands. Going back to Somalia example, 43.5% of children aged 7-14 are working instead of being at school. Same with the Haiti example, despite the huge expenditure on primary education, 35.60% of children are in employment.
Solving this issue requires the collaboration of the government, schools and community
On a government level, increase the number of schools to avoid crowded classes and implement legislation that protects the right of education for every child. According to UNESCO and UNICEF new policies should focus on the most marginalized children to easy the access to education and improve its quality. This can be achieved by gathering information about the children, their addresses and if they attended school or are likely to do so.
On a community level, awareness should be spread especially among parents by showcasing the downside of dropping schools and its effect on the society
On a school level, Systemic Renewal must be adopted which is the continuous process of assessing goals and objectives associated to school policies, practices, and organizational structures as they have a direct impact on a wide group of learners.
Implementing those steps will have its reflection on the society by reducing the rate of crimes and violence and poverty, economic growth, and equality among genders as well as inspiring good health.