european students’ union

New UN education stakeholder group

April 21, 2016

ESU set to promote inclusive and quality education for all as co-organising partner of new UN stakeholder group.

The UN General Assembly recognised in 2013 the need to create new ‘educational and academic’ stakeholder group. The European Students’ Union (ESU), the Global Campaign for Education (GCE), Education International (EI) and the International Council for Adult Education (ICAE) have now come together and proposed to the UN that they could be the Organising Partners of this new stakeholder group focused on education. This gives the members of all of our networks a clear route to engaging in the UN processes on the SDGs, and builds on the work that ESU is already undertaking in terms of implementing the SDG4 in Europe.

“Although a final decision from the UN on our proposal for the operation of the group is still pending, we are optimistic that in the coming weeks this will be formalised. This is a very exciting means for promoting the implementation of the SDGs, and in particular the SDG 4 to ”ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning in particular.” says Viktor Groenne, ESU Executive Committee Member.

The first task of the stakeholder group has been to carry out a consultation among its constituencies in preparation for the upcoming UN High Level Political Forum. The consultation has focused on the implementation of all the 17 SDGs under the topic “leaving no one behind.”

ESU followed the adoption of the SDGs throughout the post-2015 process with support from an internal working group led by NSO that was tasked with developing ESU’s policies around the process. Throughout the process ESU was a strong proponent of the inclusion of free higher education into the goals, as well as emphasising the role of education and involvement of students. The work undertaken is reflected in the Education 2030 Framework for Action, where ESU also had the honour of taking the floor during the adoption.

Following the adoption of the goals and framework for action ESU has undertaken a project with Education International and Organising Bureau of European School Student Unions to formulate demands and policy recommendations that can guide the implementation of the SDG4 in the area of secondary and tertiary education in Europe. The recommendations are expected to be published in May.,

Background

The High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF)

The High Level Political Forum (HLPF) is the central UN platform for the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The Ministerial segment of the HLPF’s first meeting is scheduled for 18-20 July, in New York. Annually, a theme for the work of the HLPF will be selected, and for 2016 it is ‘Ensuring that no one is left behind’. National, regional and thematic reviews of the SDG agenda will feed into the HLPF. It is crucial for civil society to engage with the HLPF process.

To see more on Major Groups and other Stakeholders, you can take a look here.

The new, universal Sustainable Development (SDG) Agenda came into force on 1 January 2016. A step forward in this new era is the single agenda for education, whereby SDG 4 and the Education 2030 Framework for Action share the same vision and targets.

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