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Closing the refugee education gap: Persistent challenges, emerging opportunities, and the case for global and national action

Tue, March 27, 5:00 to 6:30pm, Hilton Reforma, Floor: 4th Floor, Don Julián


Over half of the world's registered refugees of school age, some 3.5 million children, are not in school.
In fact, refugee children are five times less likely to attend school than other children.

But even for those who can access education, the quality is often very poor.

There are some promising signs that interest in and action in support of refugee education is growing,

Education in humanitarian situations in general, and for refugees in particular, became the focus of the Supporting Syria and the Region Conference, the World Humanitarian Summit and important commitments to education were made at the UN General Assembly and the Leaders' Summit.

Education for refugees was also a principal driver of the establishment of Education Cannot Wait, the global fund for education in emergencies and is an area of growing interest to the Global Partnership for Education.

In 2016 the international community also adopted the New York Declaration for Migrants & Refugees which promises education for refugee children within a few months of their displacement. The Declaration has also given rise to Comprehensive Refugee Response plans in refugee hosting countries, which includes a commitment to delivering public services, including education to refugees.

This presentation will take a critical look at these developments, identifying challenges and opportunities in delivering refugee education, including financing, policy, and practical challenges in the delivery of education.

It will draw on research undertaken in a number of refugee hosting countries including Jordan, Uganda, and Thailand to identify and compare different policy and practical approaches to refugee education and to financing of education for refugees, including the extent and nature of international assistance.

The paper will set out the importance of continued attention and urgent reinforcement and strengthening of the above developments along with recommendations for new measures and additional reforms.

It will set out the case for global and national action in the three areas of investment, inclusion, and improvement, which will be drawn from a new publication which will be released in the first quarter of 2018.

Finally, the paper will assess the delivery of global and regional commitments to refugee education and identify the need to improve the methods by which countries make pledges at international conferences and the mechanisms by which such pledges are assessed and tracked.


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