01-06-2017 | In 2014 zegde overheden van Zuidelijke landen bijdragen toe aan het Global Partnership for Education. Een recente analyse van ActionAid laat zien dat veel landen nog onvoldoende werk hebben gemaakt van hun beloften.Van de 33 landen die ActionAid onder de loep heeft genomen, zijn er slechts 4 die hun toezeggingen zijn nagekomen. 19 Landen hebben nog niet aan hun beloften voldaan. Van de resterende 10 landen zijn de gegevens ofwel niet bekend, ofwel zo onduidelijk dat er geen uitspraak over kan worden gedaan. Hoe kan het beter? In de brochure ‘Increasing Global Education Financing, bold and credible pledges to achieve sustainable change’ zetten ActionAid en de Global Campaign for Education aan aantal aanbevelingen op een rijtje voor zowel overheden in het Zuiden als het GPE.
In agreeing the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4), and the accompanying Education 2030 Framework for Action (FFA), governments committed to ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning for all by 2030. In recognition that enacting this expanded agenda will require more funds for education, the FFA sets out financing benchmarks that commit governments to spending at least 4-6% of GDP and 15-20% of total budgets on education.
The upcoming replenishment conference of the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) is a key opportunity for governments and donors to pledge to increase their funding of education in support of this agenda. At the replenishment conference, all developing country governments, donor governments, civil society, the teaching profession, foundations and the private sector which are part of GPE will come together to make pledges towards the 2018-2020 replenishment round.
The Global Campaign for Education (GCE) is calling on all developing country partners (DCPs), donors, and multilateral institutions to implement its Call to Action to increase global education financing (see Annex). This means donors increasing aid towards the 0.7% global target, channelling 30% of their funds to support multilateral efforts in education, and meeting the GPE’s replenishment goal of US$2 billion a year by 2020. Donors must also support reforms to DCPs’ domestic tax systems and developing a globally inclusive intergovernmental body that is empowered and resourced to set and enforce fair global tax rules.
A recent report by the International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity estimates that financing for education in low- and middle-income countries needs to increase to US$3.0 trillion by 2030. Ensuring the Global Partnership for Education – the only multilateral partnership devoted to getting all children into school for a quality education – has sufficient funding for 2018 onwards is vital to reversing the global funding gap for education.
The task remains urgent, with 263 million children and youth out of school around the world,1 and the finance gaps large, to provide a quality education to all. GPE countries are home to approximately 870 million children and youth, and 78% of the world’s out-of-school children.
Developing Country Partners (DCPs) have a unique role to play in the replenishment conference. They should make spending pledges to increase the share of national budgets and GDP devoted to education. These pledges must be deep, but also realistic, credible and trackable – they must be commitments which governments fully intend to meet and to which others can hold them to account.
Specifically, DCPs should increase:
• the share of the budget going to education, allocating at least 20% of their national budgets, or at least 6% of their GDP
• the size of the budget, meaning raising more tax revenues to increase the domestic resources available for education
• the sensitivity of the budget, ensuring that it supports the most marginalised and tackles inequality
• citizen scrutiny of the education budget, meaning promoting budget transparency, accountability and participation.
During the 2014 replenishment conference, DCPs demonstrated ambition and clear leadership. In total, 33 countries pledged US$26 billion, far exceeding all expectations, and ten times the amount donors pledged. Yet GCE’s recent analysis suggests that many countries remain off track in meeting the spending pledges they made in 2014,3 and progress is not clear in many countries due to a lack of a ‘credible’ pledging baseline process.
This replenishment conference, GCE is calling for the DCPs to lead the way again – this time, not only raising the stakes of ambition, but also committing to ensure they are able to show progress, on an annual basis, over the lifetime of the pledge.
There are four ways the spending pledges at the GPE can be improved from the previous session in 2014. Pledges should be:
• Ambitious. Countries should provide spending pledges for increasing the proportion of GDP and national budgets allocated to education spending.
• Clear. Figures need to be clearly referenced by governments, and be consistent with national planning documents.
•Official. Pledge figures cited by governments should be formal, having been signed off by the government as part of an agreed planning process.
• Open to scrutiny. Pledges must promote parliamentary and public scrutiny over progress in education spending and promote accountability.
• Fundable. Governments should state where additional resources might come from, most notably from increasing tax revenues.
This year the global community has an important opportunity to reverse overall trends in financing for basic education and meet the demand for education funding in some of the world’s poorest countries, with the largest out-of-school populations. We must not let that opportunity slip by: the time is now to fund the future.