In its latest global data, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) said Nigeria now has about 20 million out-of-school children.
According to the data, 244 million children and youth between the ages of six and 18 worldwide are still out of school.
As per the statistics, India, Nigeria and Pakistan have the highest figures for out-of-school children worldwide.
The figure in Nigeria was between 10.5-13.5 million. However, with the insecurity and kidnapping of school children, most parents are not keen to send their children to school.
UNESCO announced these figures in a statement that states, According to new estimates published on the internet by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics and the Global Education Monitoring Report, sub-Saharan Africa is the region with the most children and youngsters out of school. This is also the only region where this number is increasing; out-of-school rates are falling more slowly than the growing school-age population.
“The region with the second highest population of ‘out-of-school’ children is Central and Southern Asia. Worldwide, the top three countries with the most children and youth excluded from education are India, Nigeria and Pakistan.”
Silvia Montoya, Director of the UIS, believes that efficient use of available data is essential to address the gaps towards achieving the fourth goal of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The official said: “UNESCO has long emphasised the need to make more efficient use of our data, which is why we’ve brought together administrative data with information from surveys and censuses. Multiple data sources can fill gaps, smoothen data trends, and draw consistent time series.”
Assistant Director-General for Education for UNESCO, Stefania Giannini, said: “Global out-of-school numbers are lower than we anticipated, but far too many children are still missing out. Countries have committed to benchmarks to lower out-of-school numbers by over half by 2030. We must identify solutions during the Transforming Education Summit called by the United Nations Secretary-General this September so that countries can deliver on these pledges.”