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More resources and fresh policies needed to get children into school
BEIRUT, Lebanon, 15 April 2015 – Despite impressive progress in raising school enrolment over the past decade, one in every four children and young adolescents (more than 21 million) in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are either out of school or at risk of dropping out.
The last decade has seen some progress. Pre-primary out-of-school rates have decreased, although they remain high, and primary rates have fallen to nearly zero. However, there has been no improvement at the lower secondary level.
In total, 119,022 children are out of school (7%), including 54,6095-year-olds who should be in pre-primary (30.3%), 15,033 primary school aged children (1.5%)and 49,380 lower secondary school aged children (10%).
In the last decade, the countries of the Middle East and North Africa have invested considerable resources and political capital to bring more children into the classroom.
Most impressively, out-of-school rates for primary school children have plummeted, often by as much as half, bringing hope and new opportunity to millions.
On 30 January, UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, and His Excellency Mr. Antti Kuosmanen, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of Finland to UNESCO, signed an agreement by which Finland will contribute 2.3 million Euros to support UNESCO’s activities in the field of freedom of expression in Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen.
Le 23 Octobre 2012 marquera le premier anniversaire de l'élection de l'Assemblée nationale constituante (ANC) tunisienne, l'organisme chargé de rédiger une nouvelle constitution tunisienne après la chute du régime de Ben Ali. Alors que la nouvelle constitution est en cours de discussion, l’ANC a accueilli les 2-3 juillet 2012 des experts internationaux, mandatés par l'UNESCO, qui ont présenté différents modèles de constitutions garantissant la liberté d'expression, la liberté de la presse et le droit d'accès à l'information.
The 23rd of October 2012 will mark the one-year anniversary of the election of the Tunisian National Constituent Assembly (NCA), the body responsible for drafting a new Tunisian constitution after the fall of the Ben Ali regime. As the new constitution is still being discussed, the NCA welcomed international experts, provided by UNESCO, on 2-3 July 2012 who presented different models of constitutions guaranteeing freedom of expression, freedom of the press and the right of access to information.
Located in an apartment with hazardous lighting in an unfinished building, the Voix des Mines (Voice of the Mines) radio in Gafsa (350 kilometres south of Tunis) is a new experience in Tunisia. It is one of the few community radio stations in the country, a type of media that is still struggling to emerge between public and private media.
The transition to democracy can only succeed if it creates conditions that are favourable for the emergence of free, independent and pluralistic media.
In Egypt and Tunisia, where more than 90% of households have at least one television set, broadcast media are essential to open dialogue, restore citizens’ faith in their institutions and elicit their participation in public life.