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UNESCO skills deficit discussions at UoN

Nairobi youth convene with representatives of government and employers to discuss the skills deficit preventing them from finding decent work


When: Thursday, 1 November 2012 from 9.30 a.m.


Where: University of Nairobi, Education Building


What: Over 100 young people from the University of Nairobi, youth polytechnics, and vocational training institutions will engage with representatives of government, employers and providers of education and training. The day will take the form of a discussion on skills development programmes in Kenya and how they can be improved to boost young people’s opportunities for employment. The Forum presents an opportunity for media to capture young people’s views on their perspectives, expectations and challenges in fitting into the world of work, as well the standpoints of the Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) and the National Industrial Training Authority (NITA).


Why: The event is being arranged in the wake of the release of the tenth Education for All (EFA) Global Monitoring Report, Putting education to work, which reveals one in three young people in sub-Saharan Africa never completed primary school and lack skills to find decent work. The event is organized by UNESCO’s Multi-Sectoral Office in Nairobi in partnership with the African Development Bank; Ministries of Education, Higher Education Science and Technology, Youth Affairs and Sports, and various non-governmental organizations.


Background: The Report looks in depth at one of the least analyzed EFA goals on youth skills. It shows that young people need the skills taught at primary and lower secondary school to find work paying enough to put food on the table and money in their pockets. Yet, in sub-Saharan Africa, about 30 million children are still missing out on primary school while 22 million teenagers are out of secondary school, missing out on vital skills for future employment. While in Kenya the figures are better, still one in ten young people lack the skills learnt at primary school and are struggling to find dignified work. Those who are most likely to lack these skills are from the poorest households, either living in urban poverty or in rural areas. One in three young women living in rural Kenya has spent fewer than four years in school.


Read about the report here:  Practical skills, not knowledge will get you a job – UN report


The Nairobi Open Discussion Forum is the first in a series of activities planned in Kenya to disseminate the Report.  A similar debate will be held at the Kisii University College in Kisii town on 6 November 2012.   The third and final activity will be the launching ceremony of the Report to be held in mid-November and which will be officiated by the Minister of Education, Hon. Mutula Kilonzo, the Director of UNESCO Multi-Sectoral Office in Nairobi and Ms. Pauline Rose, the Director of Education for All Global Monitoring Report.

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