The UK has pledged £430 million of new UK aid to help further educational opportunities in the world’s poorest countries.
The support, announced by the UK at the G7 Summit, will go to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), the largest fund dedicated to education in developing countries.
There was recognition that ensuring girls get a quality education is a priority. Girls have been hardest hit by the effects of the pandemic, which has compounded the obstacles to education girls already face including poverty, gender-based violence and child marriage.
In announcing the aid, prime minister Boris Johnson called on other world leaders to also donate and “put us firmly on a path to get more girls into the classroom, address the terrible setback to global education caused by coronavirus and help the world build back better.”
The £430m of new aid funding announced today will go towards GPE’s work in 90 lower-income countries that are home to 1.1 billion children over the next five years.
However, Dr Mary Bousted, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, believes the UK should have gone further with its donation.
“The Prime Minister’s announcement is a welcome start but falls desperately short of the case for £600m presented by civil society and parliamentarians from all parties,” she said.
Next month the UK and Kenya will co-host the Global Education Summit in London, which aims to help raise $5 billion to support the work of the GPE over the next five years. With the money, the GPS aims to train 2.2 million more teachers, build 78,000 new classrooms, and buy 512 million textbooks.
Johnson added: “It is a source of international shame that every day around the world children bursting with potential are denied the chance to become titans of industry, scientific pioneers or leaders in any field, purely because they are female, their parents’ income or the place they were born.”