How do the SDGs pertain to education?

Education is covered broadly in SDG goal #4 which calls on countries to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

SDG goal #4 has seven targets and 3 means of implementation covering different areas:

  • SDG 4.1 focuses on ensuring that by 2030, all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education that can lead to relevant and effective learning outcomes.
  • SDG 4.2 focuses on early childhood development, care and pre-primary education.
  • SDG 4.3 calls for equal access to affordable and quality technical, vocational, and tertiary education.
  • SDG 4.4 relates to the relevant skills for work.
  •  SDG 4.5 calls for eliminating disparities in education and ensuring equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable.
  • SDG 4.6 looks at literacy and numeracy among youth and adults.
  • SDG 4.7 focuses on the knowledge and skills required to promote sustainable development.
  • SDG 4.a, 4.b and 4.c are means of implementation and focus on education facilities, scholarships, and teachers respectively.

Each target includes one or more indicators. The focus of this microsite is the first global SDG Indicator 4.1.1, the foundational stone of all the education agenda. Indicator 4.1.1 calls on countries to measure progress goal #4 by having them assess and report the “Proportion of children and young people: (a) in grades 2/3; (b) at the end of primary; and (c) at the end of lower secondary achieving at least a minimum proficiency level in (i) reading and (ii) mathematics, by sex.”

The UNESCO Institute for Statistics is a custodian agency for the monitoring SDG goal #4 data at the global level. More information on all the indicators of goal 4 is available here.