Save the Children Study: Crises Endanger Children’s Education

Status: 04.10.2022 11:18 am

Conflicts, hunger crises, extreme weather – these jeopardize educational opportunities for children around the world. A particularly large number of countries in Africa are affected, according to a report by the charity Save the Children.

According to a study by aid organization Save the Children, crises and climate change are endangering the educational opportunities of millions of children worldwide. In Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia and Mali alone, a total of 49 million girls and boys are at extremely high risk of not receiving an adequate education, the aid agency said when a study was published.

It is estimated that around 78 million children worldwide are unable to attend school due to various crises.

Food price risk factor

The aid agency claims to have surveyed education systems in 182 countries for the report. Susceptibility and willingness to deal with various dangers that endanger children’s right to education have been examined. Out-of-school boys and girls are more likely to suffer from hunger, violence, abuse, child labor or early marriage, the report said.

In particular, the global hunger crisis and conflicts, rising food prices and extreme weather are having a strong impact on the education systems of many countries, the aid organization explains. With Sudan, Somalia, Mali, Nigeria, the Central African Republic, Eritrea and Djibouti, seven of the ten most vulnerable countries are in Africa.

No energy for the way to school

All ten most vulnerable countries also experienced high levels of food insecurity: in Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen and the Central African Republic, more than 20 percent of the population is said to be in a hunger crisis.

This also has consequences for educational opportunities: in Somalia, for example, the children interviewed by the organization no longer attend classes because they no longer have the energy to go to school due to the hunger crisis. Educational opportunities in Afghanistan have deteriorated since the Taliban came to power, especially for girls, the study finds.

Pandemic as “serious catastrophe”

One of the biggest improvements is in Colombia, which is believed to be due to easier access to Covid-19 vaccines. Still, the pandemic is “one of the most devastating disasters to affect children’s education since time immemorial,” said Hollie Warren, Save the Children’s director of education.

The impacts are felt most strongly by children and young people, who are already hardest hit by conflict, climate catastrophes, hunger crises and poverty. In many countries, schools were closed for months to contain the pandemic.

protecting education systems

However, it is possible to protect education systems. Every country needs a preparedness plan to provide learning opportunities for children in crisis. The countries where education is already at risk must “act as soon as possible”: children need targeted offers to catch up on what they have missed, especially basic knowledge. Moreover, it makes sense to divide young people into classes according to their learning level and not according to their age.

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