Target 4.5: Equity
By 2030, eliminate gender disparities in education and ensure equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and children in vulnerable situations
CREDIT: Mats Lignell/Save the Children. Masum,* a 12-year-old, came to Dhaka, Bangladesh, on his own two months ago.
On average, there is gender parity in enrolment globally in primary and secondary education. However, the average masks continuing disparities at the individual country level. In 2016, 54% of countries had achieved parity in lower secondary education enrolment and 22% in upper secondary. Moreover, not all countries that achieve parity maintain it.
Considerable disparity exists in completion rates by location and wealth. Rural students have typically only around half the chance of their urban peers of completing upper secondary education in low and middle income countries (Figure 11).
Figure 11: Many countries remain far from achieving location and wealth parity in school completion, especially in secondary education
Low comparability hampers measurement of location-based disparity: Share of labour engaged in agriculture, population size, population density, idiosyncratic national criteria or any combination thereof may determine ‘urban’ and ‘rural’ location classification across countries.
In support of monitoring the SDGs, following the 2016 UN Habitat III conference in Quito, a global, people-based definition of cities and settlements is being developed for endorsement in 2019. It compares administrative classifications with remote sensing data and census information. Strikingly, whereas national definitions suggest that less than half the population of Africa and Asia lives in urban areas, 2018 estimates suggest that over 80% do. Current estimates of rural education outcomes may include many locales that are de facto urban, masking the situation of truly rural areas.
Rural students have only around half the chance of their urban peers of completing upper secondary education in low and middle income countries
Previous year’s Target 4.5