Annual accountability in education holds the key to achieving SDG 4 by 2030

The Global Action Week for Education 2018 (#GAWE2018) by the Global Campaign for Education (GCE) takes place this week, with a focus on accountability for SDG 4 and citizen participation, a follow-up of the theme addressed in 2017.
The campaign builds on the positive outcome of the Global Partnership for Education replenishment conference held in Senegal that demands the pro-activeness of civil society in tracking the pledges made.

African and education leaders re-commit to SDG 4

As a countdown to GAWE, a roundtable was held at the AU Pan African Parliament in South Africa. It was a call for members of parliament and civil society to scale up efforts in holding governments accountable toward the attainment of SDG 4.
Defining the role of governments during the GCE roundtable, Senegalese Ambassador to South Africa Safiatou Ndiaye, called on governments to implement the commitments made at the Senegal GPE conference as a demonstration of political will to education. Delivering the keynote address at the roundtable, GCE’s President of the Board, Camilla Croso stated that, “Accountability means being able to act when something is going wrong, through policy, legislation and advocacy, including through ombudspersons to protect citizens’ rights.”
Speaking at the same event, UNESCO Director, Manos Antoninis called on the GCE movement to join the #MakeitPublic campaign asking governments to provide a progress report on education commitments to their citizens.
Supporting the call for increased accountability of governments by civil society, Global Partnership for Education (GPE) Advocacy and Partnerships Officer, Victoria Egbetayo said, “GPE will undertake annual monitoring of the pledges made by governments at the 2018 replenishment conference held in Dakar, Senegal at the start of 2018.”

More accountability needed to solve the education crisis

Lack of accountability by most governments is one of the major barriers to resolving the global education crisis. The main focus on accountability for SDGs in 2018 stress the state obligations on building democratic systems and governance through quality, inclusive public education.
GCE applauded the 2017/8 Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report for placing national education monitoring reports as a critical tool for citizens to hold governments accountable. Meaningful accountability cannot take place in the absence of critical and comprehensive data, and National Education Monitoring reports are a vital tool for transparency and accountability. Yet only 1 in 4 countries adhere to the annual publication of the reports.
Over 100 national education coalitions, national and international civil society actors globally are holding several activities during the Global Action Week for Education to hold governments accountable.
For GCE, the Global Action Week for Education 2018 will also continue to reassert the importance of ensuring countries develop credible roadmaps for implementing the full SDG 4 agenda, reverse the shrinking space for civil society, highlight public education and the central role and responsibility of governments in its provision and demand for visible and meaningful youth participation in decision making.

by Henry Malumo

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