Progress for Children: putting secondary education in the spotlight

Taken from the UNICEF report Progress for Children - A report card on adolescents, the map below highlights the net enrolment/attendance ratio of adolescents worldwide (net enrolment accounting for students of the official secondary school age, rather than students of all ages). My areas of interest - Pakistan and East Africa - evidently have a lot of progress to make. 

'In many countries there is a drop-off in enrolment  between primary and lower secondary education, and between lower and upper secondary education. Particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, drop-off is high  between the primary and lower secondary levels.  Globally, the lower secondary gross enrolment rate  was 80 per cent in 2009, whereas the upper secondary gross enrolment rate was 56 per cent. 
The gap in lower secondary school completion rates between sub-Saharan Africa and the rest of the world appears to be widening. In fact, sub-Saharan Africa has the worst secondary education indicators of any region: Its level of enrolment of secondary-school-aged children is the lowest, as are its rates of secondary school completion, and it has fewer girls enrolled than boys. 
Low secondary school enrolment stems in part from low primary school completion. In sub-Saharan Africa, only 47 per cent of 15–19-year-old girls and 52 per cent of 15–19-year-old boys have completed primary school (see Figure 3.3 for percentages in selected countries). 
The effective transition rate measures the probability that a student in the last grade of primary school will enrol in the first grade of secondary school. Many industrialized countries and many countries in CEE/CIS, the Middle East and North Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean have primary-to-secondary school transition rates of nearly 90 per cent or above. In the least developed countries, three fourths of children who complete primary school make the transition to secondary school. 
Behind the regional averages, however, are wide  variations in primary-to-secondary school transition rates. In sub-Saharan Africa, rates range from as low as 36 per cent in the United Republic of Tanzania to as high as 98 per cent in Botswana. The transition rate does not reflect whether primary completion in the country is high or low, nor does it reflect such quality indicators as age in grade.'
Good to see a focus on adolescents, at a time of disproportionate attention given to primary education. The report explores adolescence in relation to various areas including education and work; sexual behaviour, maternal health, and HIV; and violence. You can read the full report here

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