12m MENA children not in school, says UNICEF

At least 21 million children in the Middle East and North Africa are either not attending school or are at risk of dropping out, according to a report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). The organisation said there had been “impressive” progress in raising school enrolment in the region during the past decade, with a 40 percent reduction in the number of out-of-school children. However, a combination of poverty, discrimination, poor quality learning and conflict had caused progress to slow in recent years. There were now one-in-four children and young adolescents out of school or at risk of dropping out.