On Monday 18th July, the APPG on Global Education hosted a private roundtable to celebrate the one year anniversary of the Global Partnership for Education replenishment campaign. Harriett Baldwin MP, Co-Chair of the APPG, was delighted to welcome the distinguished panel; Dr Susan Liautaud (Vice Chair of GPE), Helen Grant MP (Prime Ministers Special Envoy for Education), Nick Dyer (Director General, Humanitarian and Development), Selina Nkoile, Youth Leader and community activist, Kenya. The panel also included Ayesha Farrah and Zubair Junjunia, GPE UK Champions. 

The panel discussed the largest education crisis in modern history and its impact upon the pre-existing educational crisis. Dr Liautaud, affirmed that ‘education is not in competition with other priorities such as conflict, economic downturn, droughts and famine and climate crisis – it is inconjunct, programmes need to be horizontal so that we can address all these crises.’  Within this context, the UK stepped up to co-host the landmark Global Education Summit in July 2021, raising vital funds for the Global Partnership for Education’s ambition to get an additional 88 million children into school by 2025. 

However, GPE remains underfunded to fulfil this goal and levels of need have grown rapidly in the past year. Meanwhile, the UK has seen significant ODA cuts but continues to be a vocal supporter of girls’ education, having recommitted to it in the recently released International Development Strategy. Nick Dyer remarked, 70% of children leave school unable to read a simple sentence by age 10. Helen Grant agreed, ‘foundational literacy and numeracy skills are critical to UK education programmes.’ 

Selina, GPE advocate from Kenya, shared her personal experience with those in attendance. Selina commented, ‘I am where I am today because of education, I was due to be married but because a school was built in my village, my father allowed me to attend school.’ She went on to say, ‘education will continue to change lives and inspire change in communities. 

 After hearing from each of the GPE Youth Champions, the APPG, Helen Grant, Nick Dyer and Dr Susan Liautaud discussed in further detail the scale of the challenges facing education systems around the world and the UK’s role in alleviating them. 

The APPG Global Education, would like to extend its sincere thanks to Dr Susan Liautaud, Helen Grant MP and Nick Dyer. It was a joy to be together in Parliament, despite the heatwave!