[In this op-ed, Gina Lagomarsino, R4D’s president and CEO, discusses looks at progress in global health and outlines four opportunities to accelerate progress toward SDG4 and learning for all.]
As the CEO of an organization working to build strong, self-sustaining health and education systems, I’ve pondered whether the global education sector can draw and apply lessons from the global health sector.
Of course, there are many ways these two sectors are different. One of the biggest differences is that foreign aid spending on global health dwarfs spending on global education. This can be explained, in part, because of the urgency related to many global health issues such as malaria and HIV/AIDS — which are life and death matters — and the fact that there are one-time, cost-effective AND proven health interventions — such as vaccines — that save lives.
It’s hard to create the same urgency with education, and there are no silver bullet solutions. Educating a child takes many years and many actors — and the results are harder to measure.
Global health and global education are inherently different, and the health sector still faces plenty of challenges — but there may be opportunities for learning, particularly when we examine systems strengthening in both sectors.
Here are four opportunities to move closer to achieving quality education for all:
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Photo © Results for Development/Rachel Neill