Minister for Development, Andrew Mitchell, has signed an agreement with the US today (Friday 3 February) to help children around the world secure twelve years of quality education.
The new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will particularly support girls, who are disproportionately affected by marginalization, conflict and crisis, including extreme weather events such as flooding and drought.
The agreement will create a coalition of donors and partner countries to champion core education such as basic literacy and numeracy, help education systems deal with emergencies, and provide alternative education spaces where children can continue their education, safe from violence.
It will also support comprehensive education for girls on reproductive health, sexuality and relationships, and help address gender-based violence in and out of schools.
Minister for Development Andrew Mitchell said:
Twelve years of quality education, particularly for girls, is one of the best ways to tackle the problems facing the world today, such as poverty, climate change and inequality. But the impact of Covid-19 on education systems has been catastrophic. This generation of students are at risk of losing so much in lifetime earnings as a result of school closures.
I am delighted to sign this new agreement allowing the UK and US to work eve more closely together to support children’s education around the world. The global community must work together, as never before, to support the recovery of education systems.”
Both countries will build on the already close collaboration between them in this area, by sharing further expertise on staffing, technologies and resources to help children on the ground.
Girls are two and a half times more likely than boys to drop out of school when affected by conflict or crises, and if current trends continue, climate change will have been a factor in preventing over 12 million girls completing their education by 2025.
The announcement comes as Andrew Mitchell finishes a two-day visit to Washington DC for meetings with USAID Administrator Samantha Power and Congressional colleagues.
The Minister also met World Bank President David Malpass, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, and IFC Managing Director Makhtar Diop to discuss how to ensure the international system is fit for purpose to support developing and vulnerable countries through multiple crises.