The Board is currently chaired by Ms Marcela Gajardo, co-director of the Programa de Promoción de Reforma Educativa de América Latina y el Caribe (EFA).
The Director-General praised the EFA Global Monitoring Report as an “authoritative source” of information on basic education worldwide, saying that its findings and recommendations were shaping the international policy debate on EFA and informing the choices of decision-makers at the highest levels.
Having participated in the World Education Forum in Dakar in 2000 when the six EFA goals were adopted, the Director-General said he felt a personal responsibility to pursue the Education for All agenda. He argued that there were many “very encouraging signs in the world education map since Dakar”. However, he also noted that serious challenges remained, in particular with regard to funding. He lamented that while many developing countries were investing highly in education, others, including some of those furthest from achieving EFA, had cut spending in recent years. “This disturbing trend must be reversed”, Mr Matsuura said. The Director-General also referred to “deeply worrying” trends in external aid to EFA, commenting that donors were not meeting the promise they had made in Dakar that no developing country seriously committed to EFA would be thwarted in its achievement of this goal by a lack of resources. He said that he had written to G8 Heads of State and Government ahead of the Hokkaido Summit, urging them to meet their Dakar promise and urgently scale up aid to basic education. Mr Matsuura also highlighted that funding would be at the top of the agenda of the forthcoming meeting of the EFA High-Level Group in Oslo in December.
In conclusion, the Director-General assured the Board that he would continue to place the Report in the hands of the Heads of State, UN agencies, ministers and other voices of influence that he had the opportunity to meet. The Report is “making an outstanding contribution to UNESCO and to the global education and development community” he said, expressing his wish that the Board and the GMR Team continue to “maintain the independent analytical excellence that has characterized the Report since its first edition”.
Author(s): Office of the Spokeswoman - Source: Flash Info N° 058-2008 - Publication Date: 20-05-2008