We Need More and Better Data on Education

38 organizations issue a collective call to fund education data that will allow the world to reach Sustainable Development Goal 4

Back in February, the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and its partners sent out an urgent call to make the case for education data. Now we have an opportunity to make that case – loudly and clearly – directly to policy-makers.

Hundreds of international, regional and national policymakers will be in New York from 9 to 18 July to discuss global progress in education during the UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF). It’s an opportunity we cannot afford to miss. That’s why we are issuing a collective call for greater funding for data on Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4): a quality, inclusive education for all. Our message is clear: we need more and better data not only to monitor progress towards that goal but also to achieve it. Continue reading

Data to Deliver for Women

Sylvie Michaud, Chair of the UIS Governing Board and formerly Assistant Chief Statistician, Analytical Studies, Methodology and Statistical Infrastructure, Statistics Canada, and Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS)

Thousands of policymakers, activists and researchers have gathered here in Canada for Women Deliver, which is the world’s largest conference on gender equality and the health, rights and wellbeing of women and girls.

The theme of this year’s conference is power and how it drives or hinders progress and change. For those of us who spend our days deep in statistics, information really is power. We believe that we must deliver data on women and girls if we are to help them reach their full potential. Gender equality is a key priority for tracking progress towards the achievement of all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG 4 on quality education for all.

If an education indicator can be broken down by sex, the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) disaggregates it – from pre-school enrolment to PhD students, and from the percentage of women teachers to whether women researchers are equally represented in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses. If there are different trends for girls and boys at different ages as they make their way through the education system, we want to know why. Continue reading

UIS Develops New Survey on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information

By Moez Chakchouk, Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information of UNESCO, and Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS)

On World Press Freedom Day (3 May), we are reminded of the urgent need to ensure freedom of expression and access to information in this digital age of disinformation and violence directed at journalists. This is why the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS), working with the UNESCO sector for Communication and Information (CI), is developing a new global data collection on these issues, thanks to support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), which is a longstanding champion of human rights in the area of communication and information. Continue reading

Focus on our SDG 4 Data Digest Partners: Conférence des Ministres de l’Éducation des États et Gouvernements de la Francophonie (CONFEMEN)

By Hilaire Hounkpodoté, PASEC Coordinator

The recent SDG 4 Data Digest illustrates the range of partners working with the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) to help countries produce and use assessment data to strengthen lifelong learning. This blog highlights the work of one of these vital partners: the Conférence des Ministres de l’Éducation des États et Gouvernements de la Francophonie (CONFEMEN). CONFEMEN works with the world’s French-speaking countries to implement the Programme for the Analysis of Education Systems (PASEC), a renowned regional learning assessment.

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We Must Support Our Teachers

By Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS)

It seems so obvious: without good teachers, there cannot be good education. But when you look more closely at the conditions in which millions of them work, you could be forgiven for thinking that this message isn’t getting through.

The latest data release from the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) offers some sobering facts and figures for the annual CIES Conference in San Francisco this week. The Conference will focus on ‘Education for Sustainability’, and it seems to me that you cannot sustain anything in education – not even one single school class – without a good teacher who is driving the pupils’ learning. Continue reading

Join the UIS at CIES 2019: Education Data for Sustainability

As the custodian agency for SDG 4, the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) works with countries and a wide range of partners to develop the indicators and methodologies needed to monitor progress towards the global education goal. The UIS will present the latest developments at the annual conference of the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) in San Francisco from 14-18 April. Continue reading

Data to Celebrate 50 Years of Progress on Girls’ Education

By Silvia Montoya, Director of the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS)

This blog was also published by Norrag.

On International Women’s Day, we can look back at 50 years of extraordinary efforts to get girls into the classroom. Thanks to these efforts, the gender gap in education is closing and has been closing for decades. And today, the majority of girls worldwide complete primary school. Girls are also in school for longer than ever before. As 50 years of data produced by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) show, girls’ school life expectancy is on the rise.

School life expectancy is the number of years of education a child can expect to receive. Overall the trends look good, even though school life expectancy also includes the years that girls repeat grades. Back in 1970, the global average for girls’ school life expectancy, spanning primary, secondary and tertiary education, was around 6.7 years. Today, it tops 12 years. Continue reading