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Learning crisis hits Asia-Pacific: Teens miss out on vital skills for future employment

Regional Launch of the 2012 Education for All Global Monitoring Report, 20 December 2012, 8:15-15:30, Thammasat University, Tha Prachan Campus, Thailand

Bangkok, 14 December 2012 – The number of people aged 15 to 24 reached 1 billion in developing countries alone in 2010. Jobs are not being created fast enough to meet the needs of this group. As a result, youth unemployment is on the rise, leaving every one in eight people aged 15 to 24 unemployed, according to the 2012 Education for All Global Monitoring Report (GMR)soon to be launched on 20 December 2012 at Thammasat University, Tha Prachan Campus, Thailand. 

In East Asia and the Pacific, over 28 million people aged 15 to 24 have not completed primary school and need alternative ways to acquire basic skills for employment, stated in the 2012 GMR Report. More specifically, one in twelve young people in East Asia and the Pacific fail to complete primary school. Unequal opportunities to skills and quality education exacerbate this trend. The poor, females or members of marginalized groups are the most disadvantaged hence risk further marginalization in the labour market.

The Report calls attention to the urgent need to invest in young people because they require the skills taught at primary and lower secondary school to find decent jobs.

Key findings of the 2012 Education for All GMR Report will be presented by Gwang-Jo Kim, Director of UNESCO Bangkok at the Regional Launch of the Report from 8:15am - 15:30pm on 20 December 2012.  Mr. Sombat Suwanpitak, Secretary-General of the Thai National Commission for UNESCO and Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education of the Royal Thai Government will deliver opening remarks along with Prof. Dr. Somkit Lertpaithoon, The Rector of Thammasat University.

The regional launch of the 2012 GMR will also feature a panel discussion with Asia-Pacific’s leading experts from UNICEF, Dvv International, the Asia South Pacific Association for Basic and Adult Education (ASPBAE), ILO, Plan International, and UNESCO Bangkok, who will debate a range of issues in education, skills development and employment for youth in the region. The session will be held in English.

A national roundtable discussion in Thai will take place in the afternoon under the theme of “Ten Vital Steps towards a Sustainable Future: Policy Implications for Youth and Skills Development in Thailand.”

Education for All (EFA) is an international commitment agreed upon by governments, INGOs, UN agencies and development partners. The six EFA goals include the expansion and improvement of early childhood care and education, achievement of universal primary education, lifelong learning and life skills, adult and youth literacy, elimination of gender disparities in primary and secondary education and improvement in all aspects of quality of education.

The EFA Global Monitoring Report is an annual publication commissioned by UNESCO to track progress in achieving the EFA goals. The latest edition is entitled Youth and Skills: Putting Education to Work. In addition to providing a snapshot of progress towards the six EFA goals and spending on education to finance the goals, the 2012 edition focuses on the skills needs of young people. The Report reveals the lost generation of 200 million young people around the world who are leaving school without the skills they need. Many live in urban poverty or in remote rural communities and are unemployed or working for low pay. The EFA Global Monitoring Report is developed by an independent team and published by UNESCO.

The Regional Launch of the 2012 Education for All GMR Report is organized by UNESCO’s Asia-Pacific Regional Bureau for Education in Bangkok in collaboration with the Thailand National Commission for UNESCO, Ministry of Education of Thailand, and Thammasat University.

For interviews and journalists wishing to attend the launch, please contact Malisa Santigul ( or phone: +66 (2) 391 0577 Ext 230.

To download the full report and other relevant  

Twitter: #YouthSkillsWork  #EducationforAll @efareport @EFA_AsiaPacific 
Youth blog: Youth, skills & work

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