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Last Updated: Jan 23rd, 2011 - 06:37:27 

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U.N. Literacy Decade 2003 - 2012
Feb 14, 2004, 10:01 PST


United Nations Literacy Decade 2003 - 2012

The 56th session of the United Nations General Assembly adopted on December 19, 2001, resolution 56/116 United Nations Literacy Decade in which it proclaimed the United Nations Literacy Decade for the period 2003-2012 towards the goal of Education for All.

This Resolution recognizes that literacy is crucial to the acquisition, by every child, youth and adult, of essential life skills that enable them to address the challenges they can face in life. Literacy represents an essential step in basic education, which is an indispensable means for effective participation in the societies and economies of the twenty-first century.

The resolution also supports the concept of literacy for all in its reaffirmation that literacy for all is at the heart of basic education for all and that creating literate environments and societies is essential for achieving the goals of eradicating poverty, reducing child mortality, curbing population growth, achieving gender equality and ensuring sustainable development, peace and democracy.

The United Nations Literacy Decade, as an integral component of Education for All, will provide both a platform and an impetus for achieving all the six goals of Dakar Framework for Action.

The six goals of Dakar Framework for Action

1 - Expanding and improving comprehensive early childhood care and education, especially for the most vulnerable and disadvantaged children.

2 - Ensuring that by 2015 all children, particularly girls, children in difficult circumstances and those belonging to ethnic minorities, have access to and complete free and compulsory primary education of good quality.

3 - Ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met through equitable access to appropriate learning and life-skills programmes.

4 - Achieving a 50% improvement in levels of adult literacy by 2015, especially for women, and equitable access to basic and continuing education for all adults.

5 - Eliminating gender disparities in primary and secondary education by 2005, and achieving gender equality in education by 2015, with a focus on ensuring girls' full and equal access to and achievement in basic education of good quality.

6 - Improving all aspects of the quality of education and ensuring excellence of all so that recognized and measurable learning outcomes are achieved by all, especially in literacy, numeracy and essential life skills.

The agreement stresses that literacy for all is the foundation for lifelong learning for all and a tool for empowering individuals and their communities.

Source: UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

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U.N. Literacy Decade 2003 - 2012