20 December 2012, Dhaka. Kevin Watkins, Senior Fellow, Centre for Universal Education, Brookings Institute, Washington, DC, said, “Bangladesh has achieved enormous progress in education but some challenges like financing, child labour, natural disasters etc. still exits”. Mr. Watkins, the former director and lead author of the Education for All Global Monitoring Report (GMR), presented a speech on ‘Education MDGs and Beyond’ which was held on 19th December, 2012, at BRAC Centre auditorium.
Mr. Shymol Kanti Ghosh, Director General, Directorate of Primary Education and Rasheda K. Chowdhury, Executive Director, CAMPE were also present in the event. The entire session was chaired by Dr. Mahabub Hossain, Executive director, BRAC.
In his speech, Watkins introduced the audiences with a new concept of ‘Education Poverty’ and ‘Education marginalization’ and also talked about post MDGs. The situation of people with less than four years of education is termed by him as ‘Education Poverty’ and according to his findings most of the developing countries in the world are submerged in this situation.
According to him, ethnicity, indigenous status, cast, language, location & livelihood, disability and HIV & AIDS are some of the key determinants of education marginalization. Mr. Watkins is also the author of Human Development report for UNDP. His research focuses on education, globalisation and human development.
Mr. Shymol Kanti Ghosh, mentioned in his speech that despite achieving development in the access to schools in Bangladesh, maintaining the quality of education is still a challenge.
Dr. Mahabub Hossain concluded the session echoing with Watkins’s presentation, “we must link marginality with education and look for post MDGs at international level as well as Bangladesh.”