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Emergency Trust Fund for Africa
News article20 December 2017

Enhancing refugee education: IGAD ministers sign declaration and accompanying action plan

IGAD Regional Ministerial Conference on Education - December 2017
IGAD Regional Ministerial Conference on Education - December 2017

Successful first IGAD ministerial education meeting delivers commitments to enhance refugee education.

On 12-14 December 2017, the first regional thematic meeting that forms part of the implementation of the Nairobi Plan of Action and the Annex to the Declaration took place in Djibouti on the issue of refugee education. This consisted of an expert-level meeting followed by IGAD's first ever ministerial meeting on education. This was led by the Prime Minister of Djibouti and the High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, and included education ministers from the region. Other participants included British Council, DFID, Dubai Cares, Education Cannot Wait (ECW), Germany, Global Partnership for Education (GPE), Netherlands, Norwegian Refugee Council, SCF, UNICEF, UNESCO and USAID.

Adam Kulach (EU Ambassador to Djibouti and IGAD) delivered a statement on the first day and at the Ministerial meeting.

IGAD ministers showed their commitment to enhance refugee education by adopting the Djibouti Declaration on Refugee Education and an accompanying action plan. In addition to providing political focus to the issue of refugee education and the Nairobi process, IGAD ministers agreed to:

  • Establish regional minimum education standards and targets on access and delivery of quality education for refugee and host communities.

  • Integrate education for refugees and returnees into National Education Sector Plans by 2020.

  • Develop costed, long-term refugee education response strategies, as part of national education sector plans; and coordinated long-term financing strategies in support of these.

  • Simplify the mechanism for refugee children to access quality education and facilitate their rapid entry into the national education system.
  • Develop a regional framework and mechanism for recognition of qualifications throughout the IGAD region to allow mobility of students across borders, and their (notably refugee) access to education more rapidly.


Publication date
20 December 2017
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