About 263 million children and youth are out of school, according to UIS data for the school year ending in 2016. The total includes 63 million children of primary school age, 61 million of lower secondary school age and 139 million of upper secondary age.

As countries strive to achieve universal primary and secondary education by 2030, the UIS is providing the data and analysis needed to reach the children and youth who remain excluded by better identifying who they are, where they live and the barriers they face.

In addition to its regular survey operations, the Institute works directly with countries to help them produce more in-depth data and studies through the UNICEF/UIS Global Initiative on Out-of-School Children, which aims to:

  • improve information and analysis of data on out-of-school children and develop complex profiles that reflect the multiple deprivations and disparities these children face in relation to education; and
  • analyse existing interventions related to enhanced school participation, identify bottlenecks and develop context-appropriate policies and realistic strategies for increasing enrolment and sustaining attendance rates.

A total of 87 countries from every region have joined this initiative, which has yielded a number of national and regional studies, as well as a global report and operational manual on the methodology to address the challenge of children being out of school.

This global initiative has been supported by the Global Partnership for Education.


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