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Education First: Global Movement for Quality, Relevant and Transformative Education


In September 2012 in New York, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched the Education First initiative aiming to give a “big push” to the global movement for education by 2015 and beyond.

The Secretary-General’s initiative recognizes that education is a major driving force for human development. Education opens doors to the job market and has a catalyzing effect on other development issues such as combating inequality, improving maternal health and reducing child mortality. Quality, relevant and transformative education fosters solidarity and promotes environmental stewardship, which in turn empowers people with the knowledge, skills and values they need to build a better world.

Education First seeks to mobilize a broad coalition of Governments, UN Agencies, NGOs and private sector partners to spark a “breakthrough in education” in three areas:

  • Putting every child in school
  • Improving the quality of learning
  • Fostering global citizenship

Following the launch of his initiative, the Secretary-General has called upon the private sector to make commitments to action that will address one or more of the three priority areas. To spur action by companies, the UN Global Compact and the Global Business Collation for Education have developed and launched a new online commitments platform that will host the commitments made in support of Education First.

Further information can be found on the Education First website

Further information on Education First commitments can be found here.