UNICEF 2012-2013

Step by Step Closer to School: Education in Rural Areas


Education for children everywhere

67 million children do not have access to primary school. Three quarters of these children live in Sub-Saharan Africa or in South-East-Asia. These and millions of other children who quit school before finishing their primary education are victims of poverty and other less known factors highlighting their vulnerability: girls, disabled people, indigenous people, HIV carriers, speakers of a minority language and/ or people living in rural areas or in regions afflicted by a conflict or a catastrophe.
The education quality, which often greatly differs from one country or region to another, has a great impact on the chances of a child to be educated. There are major differences between schools concerning the size of the classes, school equipment availability, teacher quality and school rules. The disparities in schools are linked to more general disadvantages concerning the parents’ income and education level, the language that is spoken at home or the access to preschool education.

A campaign for children from rural areas

Despite all global efforts, rural populations have a low enrollment ratio. The poor level of education is the reason and consequence of the poverty in rural areas.
Children from rural areas risk never being able to go to school, especially when living in far-fetched regions. Since these areas are sparsely populated, children have to walk long distances in order to go to school. The gender, language, social status or certain health problems increase the risk of social exclusion.
A high number of children have to leave school before finishing their primary education. Those who finish their primary education often cannot read nor write. Schools in rural areas are often not well-equipped and teachers are poorly educated and paid.
Furthermore, parents from rural areas are often less well-educated and traditional cultural attitudes do not always go hand in hand with education. Rural areas and particularly far-fetched rural areas are not listed within the governments’ priorities. Therefore, there are scarcely new schools and good teachers tend to stay longer in urban areas.

Step by Step Closer to School

Numerous children from rural areas are excluded from education and cannot develop their potential in order to become an active and responsible adult, contributing to their community. Our campaign is called “Step by step closer to school”. Now, we ask you to help us reduce the distance which separates children in rural areas from their schools.

For more information on the project please follow the FR  or the NL link