Issues and impact
In DPRK, a national 12-year free compulsory education policy ensures that all children complete secondary education, clearly supporting targets in relation to MDG Goal 2 (achieving universal education). Literacy rates are near universal.
Still, teaching methods have not evolved alongside international standards. While selected multimedia materials have been introduced in some urban centres, basic teaching materials do not meet the quantity needs of the country. UNICEF’s Education Programme contributes to the realisation of children’s right to education as per CRC article 28 and supports the UNSF social development outcome and MDGs 2, 3, 4 and 6 through efforts aimed at improving the quality of education and child friendliness of school environment. The main implementing partner is the Education Commission (former MoE, Ministry of Education) and the key strategic partner is UNESCO.
UNICEF supports the development of national standards and frameworks for Early Learning and Development Standards and Child Friendly School Concept and expansion of new approaches in teacher training and instructional methodologies, Life Skills Based Education and curriculum and textbook revision, especially of Mathematics and English language teaching. UNICEF also supports the introduction of innovative interventions and models in the focus counties related to WASH, improved classroom facilities, learning materials and multimedia approaches, as well as to school-based management, which can be expanded to broader areas by the Government and other partners.
To improve the efficiency of data management at national and sub-national level for improved planning and monitoring, the Programme is supporting the EC with the establishment of comprehensive monitoring system of MDGs and Education for All (EFA) in DPRK and the introduction and strengthening of Education Management Information System (EMIS). The Programme also supports national efforts for disaster risk reduction and management through preparedness, response and early recovery as per the revised Core Commitments to Children (CCCs).