The Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education Dr. David Moinina Sengeh today addressed the High-Level Segment of the 41st UNESCO General Conference with the theme of the conference ‘invest in education.’
Sierra Leone is a member of the SDG 4 High-Level Steering Committee, committing to the Paris Declaration, which calls for Investing in the Futures of Education.
In his statement, Dr Sengeh said Sierra Leone has expanded access to quality education by continuously investing in education over the past three years.
“In the middle of the covid-19 pandemic, while many other countries contracted their education financing, Sierra Leone expanded its education sector budget to 22%.”
Stating that the government believes that “equity, quality and efficiency are not competing goals in education.”
The Minister disclosed that the Radical Inclusion Policy reaffirms that the government’s will stop at nothing until every boy and every girl can access and stay safely in school, no matter their physical, cognitive, psychosocial and socioeconomic conditions.
Stressing that now is the time for UNESCO to strengthen its presence on the ground, around the world, to champion these priorities, including the harmonization of national, regional and global benchmarks, the tracking and timely reporting on progress towards our national and shared global goals, and advocating for more local investments.
An investment in education is the best gift we can give our children. “These investments must be driven by evidence-based policy development and decision making; strengthen digitization and innovation within education; and promote open collaboration and access to quality learning and teaching materials”
And that until every child around the globe can have an equal opportunity to access quality education, the world will remain unequal and limited in its ability to harness our collective human capacity. To save our humanity, our best bet for a more equitable and sustainable world, we must double down our investments in education now – nothing more, nothing less”.
The statement by the Minister came after statements by different Heads of State including Emmanuel Macron.
The high-level segment will aim to create a global political momentum to raise the profile of education and its investment imperative. It will adopt the “Paris Declaration” to renew national and international leaders’ commitment to invest in education – domestically and internationally – and to accelerate progress toward Sustainable Development Goal 4 (Quality Education).