2.3 billion people are missing out on learning

Graph of the week

Students in an outdoor classroom at the Muzu primary school. Malawi Credit: GPE/Chantal Rigaud

As much as 40% of the world’s population* don’t have access to education in a language they speak or understand. That’s equivalent to 2.3 billion people.

We have learned this week that it can be difficult to integrate mother tongues in the education system of African countries that have many different native languages, and sometimes no teachers or textbooks to teach in these languages.

Civil society organizations are pushing hard for this to change, by advocating for policy reform, organizing community engagement, and ensuring that agreed changes are actually implemented.

At GPE, we are proud to support partner countries that place mother tongue instruction high on their agenda, like in Madagascar, Rwanda and Zambia.

*  Source: Walter, Stephen & Benson, Carol (2012) Language policy and medium of instruction in formal education. In Spolsky, Bernard (ed) The Cambridge Handbook of Language Policy, 278-300. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Author(s)

The Global Partnership for Education Secretariat is headquartered in Washington DC and has approximately 100 staff. The Secretariat provides administrative and operational support to all its partners including 65 developing...

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