Educating All Children: A Global Agenda
Book, MIT Press
Belfer Center Programs or Projects: Science, Technology, and Public Policy
Access to education increased enormously in the past century, and higher proportions of people are completing primary, secondary, or tertiary education than ever before. But efforts to universalize the provision of high-quality schooling face major problems. In Educating All Children (which grew out of a multidisciplinary project undertaken by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences), leading experts consider the challenges of achieving universal basic and secondary education globally. The contributors discuss the current state of education and how to measure global educational progress, the history of compulsory education, political and financial obstacles to expanding education, the role of educational assessment and evaluation in developing countries, cost estimates for providing universal education (and why they differ so widely), the potential consequences of expanded global education, and the relationship between education and health.
The research suggests that achieving universal primary and secondary education is both urgently needed and feasible. Will the international community commit the necessary economic, human, and political resources? The challenge, say the editors, is "as inspiring and formidable ... as any extraterrestrial adventures—and far more likely to enrich and improve life on earth."
"This is among the most interesting books on education and development I have read in a decade. I welcome its publication and intend to recommend it to friends, make it required reading for graduate students, and cite it often in my own work."
—Stephen P. Heyneman, Professor of International Education Policy, Vanderbilt University
"In this rapidly shrinking and increasingly troubled world of ours, the goal of universal education is no longer a national concern but a global imperative. Each pool of illiteracy and ignorance provides opportunities for global destabilization. Curiously, humanity has long agreed on the goal of universal education but failed to deliver. The rich essays in this book explain what went wrong. But they also provide hope that the job can be done. I urge all educationists and policymakers to read this book with great care and attention."
—Kishore Mahbubani, Dean, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, and author of Can Asians Think?
"Educating All Children: A Global Agenda is a timely reminder of the importance of universal access to education in the fight against poverty. There are very real challenges that must be overcome to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of universal education by 2015: today hundreds of millions children do not go to school. We know what quality education can achieve. We can afford it and we cannot afford not to do it."
—Rt. Hon. Gordon Brown, M.P., Chancellor of the Exchequer
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