Yesterday, representatives from 52 countries met in Copenhagen, Denmark for the first-ever replenishment of the Global Partnership for Education. You may have read about it on the ONE Blog, taken action with our ONE Act a Week or tweeted @USAID to encourage the US to make a pledge. If you did -– thank you!
In addition to pledges from new donors like the US, a dozen donors committed to predictable, multi-year contributions, ensuring the Global Partnership will provide stable assistance to partner developing countries. This pledging conference was about increasing funds for education across bilateral, multilateral and private channels. Five leading donors -– France, European Commission, Germany, Australia and United Kingdom –- committed to significant increases in bilateral support to education, ensuring their leadership in education assistance.
True to the Partnership’s name, this pledging conference was not just about traditional developed country donors. Developing countries, civil society organizations and private sector companies were also represented. Twenty-eight education ministers from developing countries attended the event, coming with pledges of their own. Thirty developing country partners pledged to increase domestic expenditure for basic education by at least $2.2 billion during the pledging period (2011 to 2014). In addition to increasing domestic spending, developing country partners have committed to tackling barriers that prevent children from accessing a quality basic education, increasing school infrastructure, and increasing interventions that specifically target barriers to girls. Finally, developing country partners have pledged to recruit, train and deploy hundreds of thousands of teachers.
Civil society, the teaching profession, the private sector and foundations also pledged to invest almost $2 billion of their own organizational resources to expand activities in universal quality basic education programs over the replenishment period. Just one of these pledges, from Education International, commits to provide technical and financial support for the development and implementation of competence profiles to ensure teachers are meeting quality guidelines, as well as to recruit and train 1.8 million teachers in Global Partnership for Education countries.
Congratulations to The Global Partnership for Education on a successful first replenishment event. These initial pledges will provide millions of children with a quality primary education. We look forward to donor and partner efforts to leverage this momentum around education into more ambitious commitments in the pursuit of quality primary education for all.