Foreign secretary Boris Johnson said more than £200 million will be spent to help marginalised female students
UK launches push to get more girls into education across Commonwealth
Britain is to give £212 million of aid money to provide education for more than one million girls across the Commonwealth and to further its goal getting the world’s most marginalised female students up to 12 years of quality education.
At a reception attended by Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle, British foreign secretary Boris Johnson launched the Platform for Girls’ Education, which brings together a group of 12 influential figures chaired by Amina Mohammed, the Kenyan cabinet secretary for education, from across the Commonwealth.
Mr Johnson said: “Girls’ education is the Swiss Army knife, the Rosetta Stone, the Black and Decker toolkit that solves a multitude of the world’s problems.
“Educating girls is in all our interests. If we fail, we store up huge problems for the future and wilfully miss out on boosting economic growth, managing population pressures and creating stable, prosperous societies.
“As a Commonwealth we’ve pulled together to make one of the great problems of our time a global priority. We must keep up the momentum, we must drive forward change and we must do everything to ensure that the world’s poorest girls’ get 12 years of quality education.”
The royal couple, who are marrying next month, spoke with ministers from Commonwealth countries about the aims of the new body. A recently launched British initiative aims to share expertise to help Commonwealth countries give girls an equal education to their male counterparts and will aim to leave the nations self-sufficient in being able to provide quality educations for all.
As part of the big push on education, the UK also endorsed this week the Safe Schools Declaration which is aiming to give secure schooling to children across the world in conflict zones – girls are particularly badly affected by this.
Countries such as Australia, Ghana, Kenya and Sierra Leone joined the UK to confirm their own commitments to provide 12 years of quality education for all.