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Addressing the Gender Gap in Education

© Azoulay, UNICEF PNG, 2011

UNICEF and partners respond to gender mainstreaming in education

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, 2 May 2011 - Despite significant advances made in ensuring quality education in Papua New Guinea, persistent gender gaps in enrolment, quality and retention continue to hamper efforts towards achieving educational goals.

UNICEF Country Representative, Dr. Bertrand Desmoulins highlighted this today to participants at a UNICEF hosted workshop on "Evidence-Based Advocacy for Gender Mainstreaming in Education" and emphasised that the challenges that faced girls were more pronounced , not only globally, but specifically in Papua New Guinea.

"The 2009 education data shows that boys have a net enrolment rate of 66 percent compared to girls' 61 percent, a gross enrolment rate of 82 percent compared to girls' 74 percent and a gross completion rate of 59 percent compared to girls' 45 percent", Dr. Desmoulins said.

He stressed that investing in girls' education was an effective route to ensuring both long term economic growth and sustainable social development. He also added that there was a pressing need for mechanisms to be established to allow the use of evidence to communicate policy reforms and actions around some of the identified issues.

UNICEF, through hosting this workshop, is supporting national efforts to ensure that gender equity and equality in education are met through targeted, effective and sustainable capacity building programs.

Though significant data on education in Papua New Guinea has been collected, the challenge is how to use the data to effetively mainstram gender equity in education.

"Looking ahead, it is my hope that an outcome of this forum is strengthened national capacity to effectively address gender equity in  basic education at both national and sub-national levels", Dr. Desmoulins said.

The purpose of the workshop is to provide supoport to the continued development of skills and experiences in education data for advocacy.



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