Basic Education For All


Education and youth

© UNICEF-Indonesia_2_12010403_Josh_Estey
© UNICEF-Indonesia_2_12010403_Josh Estey

Indonesia has made tremendous progress in ensuring primary school children get an education - some 97 per cent of children aged between 7 and 12 years old are attending classes across the country.

However, 2.5 million Indonesian children who should be in school are not  - 600,000 of primary school age and 1.9 million of junior secondary school age (13-15 years).

Looking at statistics from the provincial and district levels shows that certain groups of children are worst affectedNearly half of all children from poor families do not move too junior secondary school - children from the poorest households are 4 times more likely to be out of school than those in the richest. Nearly 3 per cent of primary aged children in rural areas do not attend school compared to just over 1 per cent in urban areas.

Of those who do go to primary school, nearly 1 in 5 rural children do not move on from primary to junior secondary, compared to 1 in 10 urban children.

The probability of being out of school is 20 times higher for children whose mother has no education than for those whose mother has tertiary education; if this is proven to be a ongoing phenomena then there are major implications for Indonesia’s long-term growth, if lack of education moves from one generation to another.

Understanding and responding to these inequities is central to UNICEF’s work in education, including:

  • Strengthening the collection of data on the situation of children in schools, and out of classes, through community-based information systems
  • Assessing the reasons why many young children do not participate in early childhood development, which limits their success in entering and completing primary classes, and other barriers to primary school enrolment and completion
  • Improving the skills of school principals, supervisors, and education officials to manage and deliver quality primary education that reaches all children
  • Engaging communities and local civil society to deliver better quality services for marginalised children, for example through improved school-based management



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