UNESCO Arab Member States to draw up 2016 roadmap for Education 2030

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- Education activities in classroom at school, happy children learning
©Zurijeta

UNESCO Member States in the Arab Region take a decisive step towards achieving the new Education Goal with the first Arab Regional Meeting on Education 2030 to be held in Cairo on 15-16 December.

The meeting ‘Towards Collective Action in Achieving Education 2030 Goal in the Arab Region’ will aim to formulate a formal commitment to the future education agenda and draw up a roadmap for its implementation in 2016.

Around 90 participants from Member States are expected to attend with four regional organizations, the League of Arab States, ALECSO, ISESCO and ABEGS and 12 co-convenors and partners, namely UNICEF, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNDP, The World Bank, UNRWA, ESCWA and ILO, civil society organizations as well as private foundations active in the area of education in the region.

The meeting will be opened by His Excellency Dr El-Helaly El-Sherbiny, Minister of Education, Arab Republic of Egypt, followed by a keynote speech, ‘Transforming Our Lives by 2030: Sustainable Development Begins with Education,’ made by Ms Maysa Jalbout, Chief Executive Officer, Abdula Al Ghurair Foundation for Education, United Arab Emirates.

Through a number of presentations and discussion sessions, the first day of the Regional Meeting will focus on reaffirming centrality of education in sustainable development, understanding the Education 2030 Framework for Action and discussing how best to operationalize it in the region. The second day will concentrate on regional consensus building and mechanisms for operationalizing Education 2030 in the region. At the end of the meeting participants will issue the Cairo Commitment that will guide Arab Member States and partners to collectively work towards implementation of the Agenda.

The region has been actively participating in the global process, first by reflecting on the Education for All (EFA) achievements, challenges and recommendations through National 2015 EFA Reviews.  In order to collectively examine the status of EFA achievements and recommendations from regional perspectives, Ministers of Education, senior technical officials and regional and international development partners met in January 2015 at the Arab Regional Conference on Education Post-2015 and agreed on the key messages of the region beyond 2015 EFA, known as the Sharm El Sheikh Statement. These regional perspectives effectively informed the global agenda of education.

With the statement in mind, the Arab region took part in the WEF 2015 to voice their perspectives and priorities and contributed to reaching consensus on the world we want through quality education and lifelong learning for all.

With the adoption of the SDG and Framework for Action (FFA), the Regional Meeting will allow Arab Member States to keep the momentum and capitalize on it to collectively take Cairo Commitment forward in 2016 and beyond.