Mark Williams, Member of Parliament for Ceredigion and Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Global Education for All, has raised the importance of tackling disability and gender inequality in education during a debate on the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a set of aspirational goals that have been adopted by the 193 countries of the United Nations General Assembly, which aims to help improve development and the lives of people around the world through action on poverty, education, gender inequality, environment, and many other topics. The SDGs are the successor to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
During his speech, he noted the serious problem of access to education around the world, saying: “We have built on the success of the MDGs, but we must now set a target to ensure that the term we used in those goals—out-of-school children—is made redundant in the next 15 years. Globally, 200 million young people still have not completed primary school education, with 60% of them being women. It is about ensuring quality primary and secondary education. The Malala Fund is adamant that we should ensure 12 years of education—not just primary, but meaningful secondary education as well.”
Speaking after the debate, he added “I welcome that goal 4.5 of the SDGs notes the aspiration to end gender disparities, but also specifically addresses the biggest minority of all – the disabled. Education is one of the most important factors in helping reduce poverty and improving development, and the Government must ensure that these all important goals are met.”