Out of School Children Data Release 2015
Out-of-school numbers rise as aid to education falls short of 2010 levels
A new study shows that the number of children and adolescents who are out of school is on the rise, and grew to 124 million in 2013. Released by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) and the Education for All Global Education Monitoring Report (EFA GMR), it shows that international aid to education remains below 2010 levels and is grossly insufficient to meet new education targets to achieve universal primary and secondary education.
New UIS figures show that 1 in 11 children is out of school, totaling 59 million children in 2013, an increase of 2.4 million since 2010. Of these, 30 million live in sub-Saharan Africa and 10 million are in South and West Asia.
Girls are the first to be excluded
According to UIS estimates, 24 million children will never enter a classroom. Half of all out-of-school children in sub-Saharan Africa will never enroll. Girls are the most disadvantaged, particularly in South and West Asia, where 80% of out-of-school girls are unlikely to start school, compared to just 16% for boys.
In addition, 1 out of 6 adolescents is not in school, totaling 65 million in 2013. One third of these live in South and West Asia, another third in sub-Saharan Africa, where there are more adolescents out of school today than in 2000.
Conflict is a huge barrier to education
New UIS data show the devastating impact of the civil war in Syria. Before the conflict, nearly every child was enrolled in primary school but by 2013 about 1.8 million children and adolescents were out of school. It took just two years of civil war to erase all education progress made since the start of the century.
Financing commitments are falling short
Meanwhile, the EFA GMR shows that, despite a small increase of 6% in aid to education, levels are 4% lower today than in 2010. Without renewed commitments, assistance will continue to stagnate until at least 2017.
It will cost an extra $40 billion to provide 12 years of education to everyone in low and lower-middle income countries. To fill this shortfall, donor countries must increase their aid to education by 600%. Instead, they are placing education lower on their list of priorities: half of donor countries decreased their aid to basic education from 2008-2010 and 2011-2013.
- Joint policy paper: "A growing number of children and adolescents are out of school as aid fails to meet the mark" (PDFs available in English, French and Spanish)
- eAtlas of Out-of-School Children
- Out-of-school children and school experience in selected countries (data visualization)
- All in School: a joint global initiative on out-of-school children between UNICEF and the UIS