General Article Education: key facts and figures worldwide

Topic Selected: Education
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  • 72 million children are currently out of school, the majority of whom are girls.
  • There are at least 771 million illiterate adults worldwide, of whom 64 per cent are women.
  • Two of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) relate directly to education. MDG 2 aims to achieve universal primary education by 2015, ensuring that children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling. MDG 3 – to promote gender equality and empower women – seeks to eliminate gender disparity in education. Its first target was to get as many girls as boys into school by 2005.
  • The first MDG target – to get as many girls as boys into primary and secondary school by 2005 – was missed in over 90 countries. In countries such as Niger and Burkina Faso, only one in three girls go to school at all.
  • In 2006, failure to reach the 2005 MDG gender-parity target will result in over one million unnecessary child and maternal deaths. Educated women have greater knowledg...

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