‘Child Labor and the EFA Initiative: The Challenge of Including Hard To Reach’
Oslo, October 20-21, 2008
The denial of education to the children in poverty and using it as an excuse for failing to bring them to the classrooms is the single biggest scandal of the modern times. He said that education is the only way to empower the poor people, offer dignity, respect and security to them. He said that the ongoing efforts of the donor governments in committing resources to the EFA either through the bilateral funding or through the mechanism of EFA-FTI specifically for the countries facing endemic child labor problem and large out of school children should raise serious sense of responsibility and accountability on those who are disbursing these funds to governments. It is time now to ask the Governments to come clean on recognizing the problem and undertaking scoping of the children missing out of schools. He cautioned that there is no visible reciprocal accountable mechanism to report whether this task has been embedded in the national process by the governments and in the appraisal process by donors.
He said that this will be a clear violation of the EFA Communiqué released at Dakar in 2008 which offered constructive, practical guidelines on how to tackle the issue of the hardest to reach children. There should be a uniform composite accountability system to report on hardest to reach children whether they are victims of child labor, HIV/AIDS or caught in states affected with conflict or disabled”.
He further added that the believers imagining stepping up school enrolment will automatically tackle the child labor phenomenon need to realize that this is going to fail them and the children both. Generations of children have lost their childhood and fair share of right to education to this mindset. The need of the hour is to aggressively pursue identifying the special needs of the children missing out of schools and to meet the precondition which will allow them to attend full time school and receive quality education”.