Culture and Education

School closures triple in Central and Western Africa as education comes under fire

A surge in “deliberate” attacks against students, teachers and schools in West and Central Africa has led to a tripling in school closures in the last year and left almost two million youngsters “robbed of an education”, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Friday. 

‘We are facing a learning crisis’, UN chief warns on International Youth Day

Schools are “not equipping young people with the skills they need to navigate the technological revolution”, UN Secretary-General António Guterres warned, in a message released to mark the UN’s International Youth Day.

‘Preserve, revitalize and promote’ indigenous languages, or lose a ‘wealth of traditional knowledge’, UN chief says

Secretary-General António Guterres underscored the urgency to “preserve, revitalize and promote indigenous languages” in his message for the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples, celebrated on Friday.

Not faith, ‘but those who manipulate the faithful’ driving wedge between religions, UN-backed forum in Baku told

Following a string of hate-fuelled attacks on places of worship around the world, the High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations (UNOAC), said on Thursday that it was with a “heavy heart” that he was opening the annual UN-backed forum in Baku, Azerbaijan, on the role of cultural dialogue in building human solidarity and countering violence.

A free press is ‘cornerstone’ for accountability and ‘speaking truth to power’: Guterres

At a time when disinformation and mistrust of the news media is growing, a free press is “essential for peace, justice, sustainable development and human rights”, said the UN Secretary-General, in his message for World Press Freedom Day, marked on Friday.

Baku forum to push back against ‘rise of hate’ with strong call for cultural and religious tolerance, says UN official

Just off a plane from Sri Lanka, Miguel Angel Moratinos, United Nations High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations (UNOAC), said on Wednesday that tomorrow’s 5th World Forum for Intercultural Dialogue is opening at a “very timely” moment.

More than 3,400 classrooms damaged or destroyed by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, says UN Children’s Fund

More than 305,000 children in Mozambique are losing out on lessons at school since the devastating floods caused by Cyclone Idai, which struck southeast Africa just over a month ago. 

UN global education envoy urges new funding for ‘lost generation’ of children forced out of classrooms by conflict

A child’s “real passport” to the future – education – should be stamped in the classroom, not at a border checkpoint, UN Special Envoy for Global Education Gordon Brown said on Tuesday. 

Call to revitalize ‘language of the ancestors’ for survival of future generations: Indigenous chief

Hundreds of ancestral languages have gone silent in recent generations, taking with them the culture, knowledge and traditions of the people who spoke them. To preserve and revitalize those that remain, the United Nations on Friday officially launched the International Year of Indigenous Languages, at UN Headquarters in New York.

‘Education transforms lives’ says UN chief on first-ever International Day

Education is at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development because it gives people across the world the skills needed to realize all 17 Global Goals (SDGs), said the UN chief on Thursday, marking the first-ever International Day of Education.