Taking the Right to Education Seriously
With this project, The All for Education (AFE) coalition in Mongolia will Contribute towards fulfilment of the right to quality, inclusive and gender-transformative education for all in Mongolia, especially those who are poor and marginalized, including persons with disabilities, ethnic minorities, learners from poor families, and victims of gender-based violence and bullying.
There are considerable disparities related to educational attainment and quality by age group, location, and social group (people with disabilities, herders and migrants). These disparities are explained by several challenges, the most serious ones include poverty, internal migration to urban areas, neglect of learners with special needs (e.g. differentiated needs of boys and girls and accessibility for persons with disabilities are not considered in school infrastructure), and inverse gender gap (more girls than boys are enrolled at all educational levels).
Eliminating violence in schools and creating a safe school environment require attention and effort much greater than shown currently, particularly with COVID 19 which exacerbated abuse and inequities in education.
The impact of COVID-19 on education is immense. Long school closures and the shift to TV mode of learning restricted access to education for nearly 20% of the school population who are mostly from poor households without access to electricity, TV, and other devices. Learners with disabilities and children of nomadic herders in remote areas are left without support.
The drafts of the Education Law are currently deliberated in Parliament where the AFE Coalition had been influencing the process at the outset through proposal submission, working in the drafting committee, and participating in ministry-level discussions. AFE plans to pursue advocacy at the parliament working group and standing committee levels for the next 2 years.
Among AFE’s advocacy priorities include approval of the law provisions that ensure
- an inclusive environment, individualized support for successful learning,
- an inclusive curricula for marginalised children and youth - learners with disabilities, ethnic minorities, learners from poor families, victims of gender-based violence, and bullied learners.
AFE shall also conduct the monitoring and evaluation of policies and programmes related to COVID recovery and elimination of learning loss particularly for marginalised learners.
Education financing reforms are also planned by the Ministry of Education proposing a shift to a Results-based financing system in the education sector. AFE Coalition has advocated for increased financing that is equitable and gender-responsive, ensuring that the financing reforms and strategies are aligned with the Education law, the ESDP priorities, the GPE strategic plan, and SDG 4.
AFE continuously track and monitor the education budget at school and local levels to ensure implementation of inclusive and gender-responsive education policies attentive to the needs of marginalised learners. Parents and school community members would be empowered to participate in decisions and budget allocations to demand accountability from public authorities through active participation in school PTAs and in AFE provincial branches.
Coalition members will continue to contribute to building safe schools free from gender-based violence and bullying. Campaigns and capacity building for school community members will contribute to prevent GBV among students. AFE plans to expand this activity by reaching education specialists and public officials involved in research, in-service training, curriculum and textbook development.
Training and collaboration on curriculum reforms will ensure gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory school curricula and textbooks. Gender-related findings and recommendations from three previous studies will be used for public awareness activities and social media campaigns.
An earlier phase of the project was implemented in 2020-2021 with support from Education Out Loud.