UNESCO awarded Magisterio prize for excellence in education
The 2011 Magisterio Prize for Education Protagonists has been awarded to UNESCO’s Education for All (EFA) programme “in recognition of its ambitious educational horizon for 2015”. Magisterio, a specialized education newspaper from Spain, awarded the prize to the Organization during a ceremony on 17 November in Madrid.
The Magisterio Prize highlights the work of institutions, organizations and individuals who enhance educational processes, improve education and more generally contribute to the development of their societies through education. Notably, Magisterio recognizes integral educational approaches, which improve education both in the classroom and beyond it, and involve partners from different social, political, educational and economic fields in pursuit of a better world for future generations.
UNESCO was awarded the Prize in recognition of EFA’s “ambitious target of making the right to education a reality worldwide”. The Spanish Ministry of Education, the Pisa Report, Microsoft and Obra Social la Caixa are among the other winners.
In an article devoted to the EFA programme, Magisterio refers to UNESCO’s unique role at the head of EFA. UNESCO’s annual Global Monitoring Report, is a global reference in providing key statistics and policy analysis to track the progress towards the EFA goals in developed and developing countries alike. Other important initiatives, such as World Teachers’ Day, International Literacy Day and the E-9 multilateral group for education, are highlighted as examples of the Organization’s efforts to advocate for education and coordinate the work of governments, UN agencies, international and civil society organizations, and partners from the private sector.
Magisterio also stresses that “between 1999 and 2008, the number of children enrolled in primary education in sub-Saharan Africa rose by 31% to reach 77%, while in South and West Asia and the Arab States the number of enrolments rose by 15% and 10% respectively. But, it adds, UNESCO also advocates for the rights of the 67 million primary age children who still do not have access to school. It also cautions that governments need to provide the resources necessary to meet the education goals. According to the latest EFA Global Monitoring Report, some 21 developing countries currently spend more on weapons than on their education systems. As Magisterio affirms, UNESCO “not only aspires to universal education for all, but also to a worthy level of education for all”.