Cherbourg Pupils' message to PM: Education for all please!

Pupils from Cherbourg Primary School in Eastleigh are campaigning to make sure millions of children get the chance to go to school across the world.

The children have asked their local MP Mike Thornton to deliver their messages to the Prime Minister David Cameron and other world leaders to ensure every child in the world has access to basic education as part of The Education for All (EFA) movement.

The Education for All (EFA) movement is a global commitment aimed at ensuring quality basic education for all children, youths and adults. The movement was launched in 1990, pledging to universalise primary education and reduce illiteracy by the end of the decade.

key_Education_4_All_and_Mike_Thornton.JPGAt a special assembly (pictured) about all childrens' right to education, the MP heard what pupils thought about the situation and their ideas about education. There was even time for Mike Thornton to read out the schools' sports day results!

After the visit, the girls and boys busily started preparing letters and petitions in all shapes, sizes and colours for the MP, who has promised to deliver them to the Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street.

The latest UNESCO data shows that 58 million children aged 6 to 11 are still out of school. The new global out-of-school figures show that around 43% of those out of school –15 million girls and 10 million boys – are unlikely ever to set foot in a classroom if current trends continue.

Eastleigh MP Mike Thornton said:

"Everyone should have the opportunity to go to school, and it’s great to see the pupils at Cherbourg so committed to the Education For All campaign. Education is absolutely key to help people reach their potential, and is an important tool to reduce poverty across the world.

"We need to make more progress on this - the tough picture the latest UNESCO figures paint show we still have a long way to go. Cherbourg pupils' enthusiasm gives me great hope that we can achieve more over the next decade", Mr Thornton added.

Cherbourg Headteacher, Julie Greer said:

"Education for All Day is now an annual event at Cherbourg Primary. As a Rights Respecting school it is important for our pupils to understand the affect on children around the world, when their right to education is not protected. Our EfA team of pupils have done a great job raising awareness amongst pupils, staff and parents and it has been a great experience for them to be able to talk directly to their Member of Parliament."

Class Teacher at Cherbourg Primary School, Natalie Ibrahim said:

"It has been a pleasure working with the children and finding out more about the many reasons why not all children have access to education, like we do here in the UK. We were shocked to find out the actual number of children missing out on this human right is around 60 million. The 'Education 4 All' Committee are passionate about raising awareness of this global issue and we invited Mike into school as an opportunity for the pupils of Cherbourg Primary to have their voices heard by their local MP."

The pupils Bethany, age 9 and in the 'Education 4 All Committee' said: "We have enjoyed today by raising awareness of the fact that not all children have an education."

Sheila, also 9, said:, "Every child has the right to go to school!", and Agnes, age 9, added:, "Today has been a really good experience and I hope to do more things like this in the future."

For more information on The Education for All (EFA) movement, please visit http://www.unesco.org/new/en/education/themes/leading-the-international-agenda/education-for-all/

- Pictured above at Cherbourg Primary School, left to right: Julie Greer (Headteacher), Mike Thornton MP, Bethany Flint, Sheila Agyei-Afari, Larnie Bisson, Abigail Moores, Shaun Gwira, Joy Ikondu, George Jackson, Agnes Williams, Hamis Mugendawala (Educator from Uganda), Melisa Pabat & Natalie Ibrahim (Teacher).

- The latest UNESCO data shows that 58 million children aged 6 to 11 are still out of school, showing little overall improvement since 2007.

- 17 countries have managed to reduce their out-of-school populations by almost 90 per cent in just over 10 years. Factors like introducing more relevant curricula and providing financial support to struggling families have made a real difference.

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