A educação imperativa de África

DUBAI – O Secretário-Geral das Nações Unidas, Ban Ki-moon, chamou a educação de o “único melhor investimento” que os países podem fazer para construírem “sociedades prósperas, saudáveis e equitativas”. Em nenhum lugar esta percepção é mais relevante do que em África, onde o investimento em larga escala na educação permitiu ganhos significativos na alfabetização, frequência escolar e inscrições nas universidades nos últimos anos. Mas o continente ainda tem um longo caminho a percorrer.

Segundo a UNICEF, a África Subsaariana é o lar de mais de metade  de 58 milhões de crianças no mundo que não estão na escola, principalmente meninas e jovens mulheres. Mais de um em cada cinco africanos entre os 15 e os 24 anos está desempregado, apenas um terço completou o ensino primário e, apesar de alguns progressos, a taxa de ensino superior permanece baixa.

O facto de muitos indicadores sociais estarem estagnados ou em declínio é particularmente decepcionante, uma vez que África é a casa de muitas das economias de rápido crescimento do mundo. De acordo com um recente Relatório das Nações Unidas, o número de africanos que vive em extrema pobreza aumentou em quase 40%, para 414 milhões, entre 1990 e 2010. Quatro em cada cinco mortes de crianças com menos de cinco anos de idade ocorrem em África.

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