Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Ministerial Conference on Education Post-2015

The Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Ministerial Conference on Education Post-2015 took place on 9-11 February 2015 in Kigali, Rwanda. The conference provided an opportunity to review and assess progress made in attaining the Education for All (EFA) goals set in 2000. The aim was to prepare an African vision for the post-2015 education agenda.

The conference was hosted by the Government of Rwanda and organized jointly with UNESCO's Regional Offices in Dakar and Nairobi.

Shaping Africa's Education Agenda for post 2015

Youth in the North Mali ©MINUSMA

The conference defined the education needs, obstacles, and priorities in the region, in order to inform recommendations for the World Education Forum to take place in Incheon, Republic of Korea in May 2015, and the post-2015 sustainable development goals to be adopted at the UN Summit in September 2015 in New York, USA.

The conference had a large turn out, with 44 out of 47 countries from the sub-Saharan region and 27 ministers present at the event. More than 300 participants gathered in Kigali, including civil societies, teachers’ organizations, NGOs, media, UN Agencies, bilateral and multilateral development partners, inter-governmental organizations, youth representatives, academia, and a variety of education experts.

Kigali Statement

The representatives from African countries, the African Union (AU), and other education partners adopted a statement to promote the development of education across the region. The goal is to contribute to the African vision of peace, prosperity, and integration as defined in the 2063 agenda for Africa.

After noting the uneven dynamics of progress across the region in terms of achieving the objectives of Education for All and the Second Decade of Education for Africa, the Kigali statement endorses the overall objective of the Muscat Agreement namely to "ensure equitable and inclusive quality education and lifelong learning for all by 2030."

How close is Africa to achieving Education for All?

Seychelles is the only country in Africa that has fully achieved education for all, according to the Sub-Saharan Africa 2013 EFA Report published by UNESCO’s Regional Office in Dakar. It concludes that 31 African countries are likely to attain the six Education for All goals by 2020, if current progress continues. In 22 countries (half of all sub-Saharan African countries with data), the challenges are numerous.

Some of the greatest continuing challenges identified to achieving EFA goals in Africa are:

  • low enrollment rate of girls compared to boys in school
  • severe lack of youth skills necessary for employment,
  • high drop-out rates (42% of African school children leave school early)

UNESCO works with the African Union, Regional Economic Communities, the United Nations agencies, intergovernmental organizations, and representatives of civil society and the private sector to promote the right to education throughout Africa. 

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