We must tackle the full spectrum of problems that impact education in times of crises - Save the Children
Despite making global progress on girls’ education, we still face major setbacks in places like Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen, says Save the Children.
George Graham, Save the Children's Director of Conflict and Humanitarian Policy, Advocacy and Campaigns, said:
"We welcome the UK Government's work on girls' education, including the Girls Education Challenge and the Foreign Secretary's recent endorsement of the Safe Schools Declaration. These initiatives will help in reaching some of the most marginalised girls in the world and ensure their safety at school.
The education challenges facing girls are too often exacerbated by conflict and displacement. Despite making global progress on girls’ education, we still face major setbacks in places like Syria, Afghanistan and Yemen. In order to make sustainable progress on this issue we must tackle the full spectrum of problems that impact education in times of crises.
Attacks on education, and wider civilian infrastructure, continue to be widespread. They damage children's learning outcomes and school infrastructure – both of which affect girls disproportionately. The Safe Schools Declaration – that calls on all states to take active measures to protect schools during conflict - is a step in the right direction, and offers an opportunity for the UK Government to be at the forefront of global efforts to champion the protection of children around the world, something which is needed now more than ever.
Save the Children's new global report Time to Act, released to mark World Refugee Week, also shows that increased insecurity and poverty can reduce the educational opportunities available to girls which increases problems like child marriage and child labour. Alongside the Foreign Office's efforts, it is vital that the Department for International Development ensures all education programming with refugees includes strengthening psycho-social support and social emotional learning for girls so that they can build their resilience and prepare themselves to re-enter education. Additional measures should also address the reintegration of girls who have been excluded from school, such as married girls and child mothers."