Education is every child’s right, and is crucial for their development, health, living standards, and preparing them for a responsible life in a free society. However, despite current international law and government commitments, 244 million children remain out of school. For many children, the cost of education remains a significant barrier, disproportionately affecting low-income and the most marginalised students.
The global education crisis has been further exacerbated by conflicts and the unprecedented disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. To address this issue, it is imperative to prioritize the strengthening of the right to education, not only to remediate the current devastation but also to build back better and more resilient education systems. While the Convention on the Rights of the Child and other treaties clearly guarantee children the right to free primary education, they do not explicitly recognize a right to early childhood education, nor require states to ensure free pre-primary education or immediate access for all children to free secondary education.