Spend 4pc GDP to education sector: UNESCO

BSS . Dhaka | Update:

UNESCOUnited Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has suggested the governments across the world to allocate at least 4 per cent of GDP or 15 per cent of total public expenditure to the education sector.

The suggestion came in the UNESCO annual flagship report titled Global Education Monitoring Report 2017/8 with the theme 'Accountability in education: meeting our commitments'.

The report was launched in the city on Tuesday at a function ahead of Bangladesh's next national budget scheduled to be unveiled early next month.

UNESCO Dhaka and Bangladesh National Commission for UNESCO (BNCU) jointly organised the function at the conference hall of the Bangladesh Bureau of Educational Information and Statistics (BANBEIS).

Education minister Nurul Islam Nahid addressed the function as the chief guest with secretary of secondary and higher education division Md Sohrab Hossain in the chair.

The UNESCO also made some major recommendations for the countries across the globe, including Bangladesh, for fulfilling their commitments to achieve the targets of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)-4.

The recommendations include creating space for meaningful and representative engagement to build trust and a shared understanding of respective responsibilities with all actors, strengthening the role of legislatures' education committees, publishing an annual education monitoring report, developing credible education sector plans and transparent budgets and credible and efficient regulations and monitoring mechanisms and adhering to follow-up actions and sanctions when standards are not met.

The suggestions also include designing school and teacher accountability mechanisms that are supportive and formative and avoid punitive mechanisms, especially the types based on narrow performance measures, availing transparent, relevant and timely data to decision-makers and equipping the actors with the skills and training needed to fulfil their responsibilities.

Addressing the function, Nahid said, "We have a lot of successes in the education sector. But ensuring quality teachers in the educational institutions is still a big challenge for us".

Once upon a time, female education was prohibited, he said, adding but now the girl students are going more forward than their male counterparts.

Referring to the critics of the education sector, the minister said, "Please give us proper suggestions for correction. We will accept those".

Speaking about the UNESCO's GEM report, Nahid said, "This report will help us in making time-befitting education policy. We will accept the positive things and be aware of the negative ones".

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