The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on Wednesday launched the Quality and Inclusive Education Support Partnership, an initiative supported by Sweden and Unicef that aims to enhance access to education for children in the Kingdom, particularly from disadvantaged communities.
Running from 2020 to 2023, the programme will be implemented with an $8.3 million budget.
“The partnership will contribute to advancing Cambodia’s Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs], whose attainment is linked to education quality and inclusion, gender equality as well as health, nutrition, water, sanitation and hygiene in schools. It will benefit children, particularly those from disadvantaged groups, who are struggling to realise their potential,” a joint press release said.
The partnership was inked on Wednesday by Swedish ambassador to Cambodia Bjorn Haggmark, Unicef representative to Cambodia Cristian Munduate, and Minister of Education, Youth and Sport Hang Chuon Naron at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport in Phnom Penh.
Chuon Naron said education is a priority for the government and is considered critical in improving human resources and enabling economic growth.
“Through this new partnership with Sweden and Unicef, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport will further strengthen the education system and respond more effectively to the education needs of all children in Cambodia,” Chuon Naron said.
Haggmark noted Sweden’s longstanding cooperation with Unicef and the ministry to improve the quality and inclusiveness of education in Cambodia.
“Sweden is delighted to have been a longstanding partner with Unicef and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport in rebuilding and strengthening the education system in Cambodia.
“By renewing this partnership, we will continue to assist all children in Cambodia, particularly those from ethnic minority groups, those living with disability and those from rural and urban poor areas, to access quality, inclusive and equitable education,” he said.
The partnership will contribute to the realisation of development goals and SDGs, Haggmark added.
Unicef’s Munduate highlighted the importance of the new partnership in broadening the prospects and life pathways of Cambodia’s children.
“Despite tremendous progress in education, many children in Cambodia continue to fall behind in school for several reasons, including poor quality of teaching and learning environments,” she said.
She said the partnership will assist the ministry in implementing important programmes that deliver better quality and more equitable education for every child in Cambodia.
It will also help children and adolescents of different abilities and social backgrounds to access inclusive, quality and relevant education so they can fully develop and reach their full potential, she added.