Animated videos show education challenges and solutions in sub-Saharan Africa

21 May 2024
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UNICEF ESARO, as part of the KIX Africa 19 Hub Consortium, has recently unveiled three animated videos that weave together a story of challenge, resilience, and innovation in the field of education across Sub-Saharan Africa. These narratives offer insights into the multifaceted approach required to ensure that every child has the opportunity to learn and thrive. 

Laying the Groundwork with Early Childhood Education 

The narrative begins with the "UNICEF ECE Accelerator Toolkit," introducing a critical resource aimed at enhancing early childhood education (ECE) across the region. This toolkit is designed to integrate evidence based ECE plans into broader educational strategies, emphasizing the vital role of early education in lifelong learning and development. By advocating for a systemic approach that includes crisis management, gender inclusion, and advocacy, this initiative lays the foundation for equitable access to quality education from the earliest stages of development. 

Addressing the Educational Gap for Girls 

Building on the importance of foundational education, the story progresses to "Bringing African Girls Back to School." This video shines a light on the staggering number of girls out of school in Sub-Saharan Africa and the complex barriers they face, including economic constraints, societal norms, and safety concerns. Highlighting the story of Amina as a representation of the challenges faced by millions, it showcases the efforts of the KIX Africa 19 Hub and its partners to create a gender-responsive education system, underlining the transformative power of education for girls and their communities. 

Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities 

The final piece of the narrative, "Country Progress in Disability Inclusive Education in Sub-Saharan Africa," addresses the additional challenges faced by children with disabilities. Revealing the disparities in educational opportunities and achievements, this video underscores the importance of inclusive education. It showcases the progress and ongoing efforts in various countries to adapt environments and curricula to meet the diverse needs of all learners, aiming to ensure that no child is left behind. 

Through these interconnected stories, UNICEF ESARO and the KIX Africa 19 Hub Consortium emphasize the comprehensive and cohesive efforts needed to tackle the educational challenges in Sub-Saharan Africa. From the foundational stages of early childhood education to addressing the specific needs of girls and children with disabilities, this narrative champions a future where every child has the chance to learn, grow, and contribute to their society. 

What makes a school a model for inclusive education? 

Inclusive Education embraces “Universal Design for Learning” and ensures school systems are equipped with skills, knowledge, and resources to teach all learners in accessible environments. In the Eastern and Southern Africa Region, there is an increasing commitment by governments to safeguard the rights of children with disabilities. Although special education remains the most common educational approach for children with disabilities in the region, the promotion of inclusive education is a promising initial step towards ensuring children with disabilities have access to quality inclusive education. 

The video provides information on the key ingredients that make an inclusive school, which include ensuring accessibility of the school environments, training teachers to use “Universal Design for Learning”, providing individualized support services and reasonable accommodation, advocacy, and engagement with stakeholders among others. Educating children with disabilities has economic, social and health benefits, for them, their families, and the nation.