30 November 2021

November was a busy month at UNESCO. The organisation held its 41st General Conference, at which a report on the future of education was launched, in addition to the adoption of the Paris Declaration, and the result of the 10th Consultation on the measures taken by Member States for the implementation of the 1960 Convention against discrimination in education.

We have drawn together the most significant developments into this article - read on for more information. 


Futures of education

Following a participatory process spanning two years, UNESCO published a report on 4 November, entitled ‘Reimagining our futures together: A new social contract for education’.

The report is the product of an extended period of global consultation, and draws upon the input of over a million individuals to answer the questions which shape the organisation’s futures of education review: What should be continued? What should be abandoned? And what needs to be creatively invented afresh? 

The report calls for a new social contract for education, which recognises the challenges the world faces and the changing nature of education systems in order to unite the world, while repairing past injustices and transforming the future on the basis. The report also urges a championing of the vital role played by teachers, and defends education as a public good. 

The future of education initiative continues, and UNESCO seeks further involvement in the process which has seen over a million individuals and organisations contribute to date. UNESCO will be drawing upon the initiative and report during its International Seminar on the Evolving Right to Education, to be held online on 7 and 8 December 2021 to foster a dialogue on the possible new dimensions of the right to education, to make this right better enforced in the present and future contexts.


Paris Declaration 

Heads of State and government ministers from more than 40 nations adopted the Paris Declaration at the 2021 Global Education Meeting in Paris this November. The Declaration is a global call for investment in the future of education, and addresses both the urgent need for financing and the educational inequalities laid bare and intensified by the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Declaration represents a commitment by participating states to improve investments through public financing and international aid for education. Find out more about the text and the context in which it was developed here.


Monitoring of the UNESCO Convention against Discrimination in Education  

The UNESCO 41st General Conference approved the results of the 10th consultation on the measures taken by Member States for the implementation of the 1960 Convention against discrimination in education. Find the short report summary here

The Resolution reaffirms the centrality of the right to education in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable  Development, and the key role that the implementation of the Convention plays in achieving Sustainable Development Goal 4.

The full report analyzing the findings of the Consultation, including specific guidance for action, will be available online shortly.