The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) says over 6 million of school-age refugee children around the world have no school to go to.
Filippo
Grandi, UN high commissioner for refugees, warned that the problem
could lead to further conflicts if it was left unaddressed.
Most of these 3.7 million children who are not getting a primary or secondary education live in developing countries.
The agency said some 900,000 of them are Syrians.
According
to the report that UNHCR published ahead of next week’s UN refugee
summit in New York, lack of basic schooling affects refugees’ chances in
later life.
“Only one in 100 refugees manages to enter a university, compared to one in three among ordinary youth,” Grandi said.
“All
too often, education for refugee children is considered a luxury, a
non-essential optional extra after food, water, shelter and medical
care.
“This lack of schooling can be hugely damaging,
not only for individuals but also for their families and societies,
perpetuating cycles of conflict and yet more forced displacement.’’
He appealed to donors to focus on the issue.
Regions with low education levels are more likely to experience conflict.
Grandi
acknowledged that poor host countries are often struggling to educate
their own native population and that an influx of refugees could
exacerbate the problem.
Report says over of the world’s
refugee children that are out of school live in these seven countries:
Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Lebanon,
Pakistan and Turkey.
In Turkey and Lebanon, two of the
main host countries for Syrian refugees, only about 40 per cent of
Syrian children attend schools.