Education Day

International Day of Education

24 January

Education is a human right, a public good and a public responsibility.

The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 24 January as International Day of Education, in celebration of the role of education for peace and development.

Without inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong opportunities for all, countries will not succeed in achieving gender equality and breaking the cycle of poverty that is leaving millions of children, youth and adults behind.

Today, 258 million children and youth still do not attend school; 617 million children and adolescents cannot read and do basic math; less than 40% of girls in sub-Saharan Africa complete lower secondary school and some four million children and youth refugees are out of school. Their right to education is being violated and it is unacceptable.

child going to school
"In these exceptional times, business as usual is no longer an option. If we are to transform the future, if we are to change course, we must rethink education. This means forging a new social contract for education, as called for by the UNESCO report on the  Futures of Education, released last November."
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay UNESCO Director General
little girl at school

On 24 January 2022, we will be celebrating the fourth International Day of Education under the theme “Changing Course, Transforming Education”. As it was detailed in  UNESCO’s recent global Futures of Education report, transforming the future requires an urgent rebalancing or our relationships with each other, with nature as well as with technology that permeates our lives, bearing breakthrough opportunities while raising serious concerns for equity, inclusion and democratic participation.

This year’s International Day of Education will be a platform to showcase the most important transformations that have to be nurtured to realize everyone’s fundamental right to education and build a more sustainable, inclusive and peaceful futures. It will generate debate around how to strengthen education as a public endeavour and common good, how to steer the digital transformation, support teachers, safeguard the planet and unlock the potential in every person to contribute to collective well-being and our shared home.

What UNESCO does on Education

UNESCO's action on Education

UNESCO's work encompasses educational development from pre-school to higher education and beyond.

Futures of Education

A global initiative to reimagine how knowledge and learning can shape the future of humanity and the planet.

Leading the Education 2030 agenda

Every goal in the 2030 Agenda requires education to empower people with the knowledge, skills and values.

The #RightToEducation campaign

Say no to discrimination in education!

Education progress - A Data visualization tool

All children need access to education of good quality.


The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on education: international evidence from the Responses to Educational Disruption Survey (REDS)
COVID-19 school health and safety protocols: good practices and lessons learnt to respond to Omicron
SDG 4 data digest 2021: national SDG 4 benchmarks: fulfilling our neglected commitment