By The Honourable R.J. Simpson, Minister of Education, Culture and Employment, Northwest Territories, Canada, and former Chair of the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada
Canada has been a long-standing partner of UNESCO and its mission to ensure that member states prioritize investing in early childhood care and education (ECCE). In early July, I was delighted to lend my voice to the launch of two new UNESCO ECCE reports. The reports call for inclusive early childhood care and education for all, and serve as foundational documents for the development of a much needed new Global Partnership Strategy — or “GPS” — for Early Childhood, to be launched on December 6, 2021. This GPS for Early Childhood is a new international agenda designed with development partners and UNESCO member states to support governments to overcome pre-existing barriers to providing effective early childhood care and education services, as well as to flexibly address new challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is vital to accompany the GPS initiative with greater training and support for early educators, more inclusive curricula that create a sense of belonging for all children, increased collaboration with non-governmental organizations, and greater financial support. These are the world’s youngest. They deserve a fair start.
Canada looks forward to continuing to contribute to the new Partnership Strategy to find solutions that make a difference. We know that we will not make progress towards the global education goal by working in silos.Continue reading