The high-level segment of the 2021 Global Education Meeting aimed to mobilize world leaders to make an urgent call for investing in education for Covid recovery and the future of education. This call to invest in education comes at a critical moment of re-imagining the education systems following hard lessons taught by the Covid-19 pandemic. The world has collectively realized that the education sector needs to take a multisectoral approach to address the Covid 19 crisis. The health, nutrition and well-being of children are interrelated to learning, access to education and the closing of disparities. This approach can help bring other sectors on board, like the health, food, and social protection sectors.
Minister of Education, Hon. Dr UWAMARIYA Valentine
Through the 2020 Global Education Meeting Declaration, the world is committed to reinforcing closer inter-sectoral collaboration and investment in education and to safely reopening schools, strengthening and restoring access to services such as school meals, health, wash, social protection, etc. Priority was determined to be health and safety of students and educators; ensuring that reopening plans are equitable, gender response, inclusive, and targeted.
Rwanda Minister of Education Dr. UWAMARIYA Valentine has noticed: ”That is exactly what we have done through the School Meals Coalition, which was launched during the Food Systems Summit on 23rd of September 2021. The Coalition is a powerful call to action to ensure healthy school meals and other health services to all children in the world. Its objective is to accelerate progress towards SDG 4, while accelerating simultaneously other SDGs essential to education, like poverty and hunger reduction and gender equality.”
Honorable Valentine UWAMARIYA, during her intervention, noticed that “Rwanda made the safe reopening a priority, and has deployed various measures to that end, including measures to ensure health and sanitary conditions, restoring and scaling school meals and other essential health services.” She commends UNESCO’s efforts to mobilize world leaders to invest in education and fully support the Paris Declaration.
In 2020, Rwanda scaled up school meals programs across all levels of basic education, expanding coverage from 640,000 t0 3.3 million children, with a significant increase in the fiscal budget for school meals in multiple folds.