Education ministers and policy makers from countries with high numbers of out of school children will gather in Doha on 30 April 2014 at the Second Educate A Child (EAC) High-Level Ministerial Meeting to discuss sustainable measures to accelerate action to reduce the number of children worldwide who are missing their fundamental right to education.  

EAC is a global programme of the Education Above All, an initiative of Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, working to address the reasons that keep at least 57 million children worldwide from their right to a quality primary education. The programme supports successful initiatives on the ground, providing resources and support efforts around the globe that provide quality primary education. EAC also works with governments and third parties in countries to prioritize the importance of addressing the out of school children issue.

Marcio Barbosa, CEO of Education Above All, said:

A key part of EAC’s mandate is to advocate for prioritising enrolment and retention in primary education for marginalised children in regions suffering from conditions such as poverty, conflict, discrimination or natural disaster. By getting governmental support and endorsement for our projects we are creating the conditions for a long-term cooperation and a sustainable operation.’

The meeting will bring together education ministers and high-ranking delegations from 15 EAC priority countries including Algeria, Angola, Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Nigeria, the Philippines, South Africa, Tanzania, Yemen and Zanzibar. The high-level ministerial meeting will see attendance from countries that are presently not working with EAC but need to address prevailing challenges to bring children into the primary education system and help them to implement ideas that have been successful with other EAC partner countries. A number of Qatari authorities and entities, some existing partners of EAC, will also attend the meeting.

The meeting will also provide a platform for education ministers to present an overview of their national primary education plans for out of school children as well as the challenges anticipated in enroling and retaining children. The meeting will cover EAC’s recommendations for collaborating successfully to address these challenges within the purview of national education plans.

In addition to priority country delegates, strategic partners of Educate A Child will attend, including Bharti, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNRWA and the Global Partnership for Education, represented by its Board Chair, former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

In less than six months from its launch, EAC was already supporting primary education for 500,000 pupils through 25 co-funded projects in Africa, the Middle East, Asia and South America. EAC’s target of supporting 2 million out of school children enrolled in quality education programmes this academic year is on track, with the goal of reaching 10 million by the end of the 2015-2016 school year.