UNHCR: Four million refugee children can not go to school

UNHCR: Four million refugee children can not go to school

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Only about 61 percent of refugee children manage to go to an educational institution comparable to primary school, compared to 92 percent of children worldwide.

“Education is a means to help children (refugees) heal, but it is also fundamental for the reconstruction of their countries,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said in a statement.

“Without education, the future of these children and their communities will be irreparably harmed,” he added.

Some four million refugee children in the world do not currently go to school, which means half a million more children without access to education in just one year, denounced on Wednesday (29.08.2018) the UN Agency for Refugees (UNHCR) in a new report.

According to the study “Investing the Trend: Education of Refugees in Crisis”, at the end of 2017 there were more than 25.4 million refugees in the world, 19.9 million of whom were under the tutelage of UNHCR. More than half of this population consisted of children, 7.4 million of them of school age.

Only one percent have access to tertiary education

However, only 61 percent of refugee children attend primary school, compared to a global enrollment rate of 92 percent.

As refugee children grow, this gap deepens, with almost two-thirds going to primary school unable to enroll in secondary school.

Only 23 percent of refugee children go to a secondary school compared to a world rate of 84 percent, explains UNHCR in its report.

In tertiary education, the gap becomes an abyss. The overall enrollment rate in institutes of higher education stands at 37 percent, while only 1 percent of refugees have access to the same educational opportunity, a figure that has not changed in the last three years.

Advances and challenges

The report highlights the progress made in enrolling in the school in 2017 500,000 children who previously did not have access to education, but at the same time calls for more to be done to ensure that all refugees obtain the quality education they deserve.

UNHCR therefore urges host countries to register refugee girls and boys in national education systems, with an appropriate curriculum at each stage of primary and secondary school, in such a way that the recognized qualifications are a springboard for the university or higher vocational education.

It also notes that the countries of developing regions host 92 per cent of the refugee population of school age worldwide and therefore need more sustained financial support from the international community.

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