Education has the power to transform children’s futures. We're helping millions of children go to school.
Education is many children's route out of poverty. It gives them a chance to gain valuable knowledge and skills, and to improve their lives.
And it means when they grow up, their children will have a much better chance of surviving and thriving.
But millions of children today never see the inside of a classroom. Many others drop out, often because their class is overcrowded and the teachers poorly trained.
That's why we're helping millions of children go to school for the first time, and improving the quality of the education on offer.
Changing the story in Britain
In the UK, the poorest children do much worse at school on average than their better off classmates.
too many boys and girls in the UK fall badly behind in literacy in their first few years at school. Most of these children never catch up, leaving school without basic reading skills or good qualifications.
Among children who leave primary school without basic reading skills, five years later almost all of them – 93% – fail to get five good GCSEs.
By the time they reach GCSEs, children from poor families do half as well as their better off classmates (27% of children from poor families get 5 or more good GCSE passes, compared with 55% from better off families).
That’s why we're working in partnership with Families and Schools Together (FAST), an award-winning, project that supports parents in improving their children’s learning and development at home, so they can reach full potential at school.
We've also started Born to Read giving poorer children in the UK the reading skills they need for a better future by placing volunteers in local primary schools to support children who are struggling with reading.
Find out more about FAST.
Education in emergencies
Children always tell us the same thing in emergency situations: what they want most of all is to get back to school. That’s true whether they’re recovering from a natural disaster or growing up amid conflict.
Children’s right to a decent education is as basic as their right to food and water. That’s why we called for education to become a key part of emergency responses – along with shelter, nutrition and medicine. Now we’re a lead agency in coordinating education in emergencies.
Education in conflict
Children growing up in war-torn countries are most at risk of missing out on school.
We're currently working in partnership with the EU and the Norwegian Refugee Council on bringing education to 5,000 children in the Dollo Ado refugee camp in Ethiopia. Find out more about the EU Children of Peace initiative