On the International Day of Education, the UN Secretary-General’s office announced the Transforming Education Summit and encouraged everyone to unite in making education a common good and a top political priority.
The COVID-19 pandemic led to an unprecedented educational crisis, interrupting the schooling of 1.6 billion students at the height of the crisis. Even today, the schooling of nearly 31 million students remains disrupted by school closures. As António Guterres, Unites Nations Secretary-General, points out, the proportion of children in developing countries who leave school unable to read could rise from 53% to 70% if we do not act.
Beyond the issues of access and inequality, education faces major challenges: technical innovation, dramatic changes in the world of work, the reality of the climate emergency and a general loss of trust between people and institutions. There is a need to place education at the heart of efforts to transform the economy and society towards sustainable development. This also means launching a reflection on how education systems can evolve to accompany and support this transformation of societies by 2030.
This is the objective of the Education Transformation Summit to be held in New York in September 2022 during the 77th Assembly of the United Nations. Recognising that education is a foundation for peace, tolerance, human rights and sustainable development, this Summit aims to mobilise and converge actions, ambitions, solidarity and solutions to transform education by 2030. A pre-Summit conference will take place in Paris in June 2022. A focused, intensive and inclusive preparatory process has been launched by UNESCO, with the aim of taking into account the priorities of Member States and ensuring the meaningful engagement of young people and all education stakeholders.
The UNESCO Chair is a partner in this event and is involved in its preparation, particularly in the area of “inclusive, equitable, healthy and safe schools”.