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Wednesday January 16, 2019


Education trade unionists push for achievement of gender equality and empowerment of rural women and girls.

Participants from Education International’s member organisations were among the over 100 trade unionists from 42 countries at the 62nd Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, which got underway in New York on 12 March.

Women in rural areas make up a quarter of the world’s population, and play a vital role in their communities by contributing to food security, generating income and providing for the well-being of their families. However, women and girls in rural areas continue to face systemic and persistent barriers to the full enjoyment of their human rights, including the right to education.

Girls who live in rural, remote or marginalized areas are at greater risk of not completing school. Structural barriers and entrenched discriminatory social norms lead to the gendered division of household labour and favouring of boys, early and child marriage, early motherhood, and alarmingly high rates of domestic and school-related gender-based violence. All of these problems threaten girls’ access to education and undermine attempts to achieve gender equality in education.

Malala Fund’s Hannah Orenstein explains why measuring how girls are educated in countries around the world is a powerful way to make sure that they actually get the resources they need to succeed.

On 15 March, the joint EI/UNGEI/Norway side event was on ‘Agenda 2030 for All: Gender, Learning and Teaching in Rural Contexts’. EI Deputy General Secretary, Haldis Holst represented EI on the panel, and spoke about the challenges and opportunities associated with being a female teacher in rural contexts.


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