The Gambia yesterday launched the 2015-2016 Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report which is aimed at monitoring the progress of education within the education target for the new framework of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
Obtaining a quality education is the foundation to improving people’s lives and sustainable development and therefore, the United Nations SDG4 sought to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
In The Gambia, major progress has been made towards increasing access to education at all levels and increasing enrolment rates in schools particularly for women and girls. Amongst the measures put in place by the Gambian authorities is the Education for All Initiative, the Fast Track Initiative, free basic and secondary education at all public schools and this has impacted immensely to the increment of enrollment at schools each years.
The government in the past two decades has built schools at all categories in almost every nook and cranny of this country giving the students the opportunity to access schools within few walking distance. To add to this, The Gambia would also introduce free university education in 2018. This will further help to consolidate the gains made by the country.
But despite these considerable gains, the Gambian authorities do not want to be complacent and as a result has ensured that as part of the launching of the new report, a panel of experts discussed the main conclusions and recommendations of the GEM report 2016 and strategies to align the national education policy with SDG4 and its related targets.
Thus, the Deputy Permanent Secretary for Higher Education is right to state that the in-depth discussions on the event between the panelists and the audience would allow highlighting the opportunities and challenges posed by the new agenda for education.
We would therefore, once again thank the Gambian authorities and stakeholders for organising such an important gathering.