2015 is a historic year as it marks the deadline for achieving the Education for All Goals and the Millennium Development Goals, which were agreed upon in 2000. From May 19th-22nd, international leaders will gather together at the World Education Forum in Incheon, Republic of Korea to agree upon and adopt a new education agenda that will serve as a guide until the year 2030. Hosted by UNESCO and six other entities, the goals of this forum are to:

  1. Analyze the achievements and weaknesses found within the implementation of the education objectives established in the Dakar Framework for Action and the Millennium Development Goals during the period 2000-2015.
  2. Reach a consensus for the 2015-2030 education goals.
  3. Reach an agreement on an action framework that will guide and support the implementation of future education programs.

Over the past 15 years, while there have been important advances in enrollment in primary education, barely half of all countries achieved universal coverage at this fundamental stage of life. 121 million children are still without access to primary and secondary education and 751 million youth and adults do not have basic reading and writing skills, two thirds of them being women.

This campaign serves as a powerful resource that brings together voices that defend the right to education.

Facing this reality, civil society organizations in Latin America have gathered together to defend the right to education and contribute to the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals debate through the campaign “La Educación como derecho humano se defiende!” This campaign is promoted by the Consejo de Educación Popular de América Latina y el Caribe (CEAAL), the International Federation of Fe y Alegría, and the Asociación Latinoamericana de Educación Radiofónica (ALER), and other Latin American educational networks have also joined the dialogue. This campaign serves as a powerful resource that brings together voices that defend the right to education. Here, you can access interviews, newsletters and publications that will help guide your understanding of what’s at stake during the World Economic Forum in Korea and the World Assembly of the Sustainable Development Goals at the United Nations headquarters in New York in September.

Lucía Rodríguez, coordinator of the Public Advocacy Program at Fe y Alegría and team leader of the Core Group of the Global Ignatian Advocacy Network for the Right to Quality Education, will be participating in the World Education Forum in Korea together with Pedro Walpole SJ (Philippines) and Silvio Gutierrez (Fe y Alegría Nicaragua). Lucía says “I still wait for justice, education for all and trusting in this generation, mine and ours, together we will meet the changes needed to reach sustainable development starting with education.”

Looking at the numbers, it is easy to become discouraged or frustrated by the extent of the challenge and what remains to be achieved, however, it is important to keep in mind our responsibility as educators and advocates to continue upholding this fundamental human right.

2015 is a year of assessment, but it is also the year to shape our new international commitments that will contribute to making the Right to Education a reality for everyone and to face the challenges of poverty eradication, climate change and to achieve a truly sustainable development for the following generations.

For more information and to follow coverage of the World Education Forum, visit the campaign, “¡La Educación como derecho humano se defiende!”  You can follow updates through the social networks of Edujesuit.

Original information for this post can be found at Edujesuit’s website, 2015: Turning point for Education.