Education is a foundation on which we build our societies. Public education develops informed and responsible citizens – this is crucial to a common future based on the principles of democracy and solidarity in a global community.
Education is a human right and underpins equality.
Quality education nurtures human talent and creativity. It contributes to the personal and professional development of the individual, as well as to the social, cultural, economic, political and environmental development of society at large. It promotes peace, democracy, creativity, solidarity, inclusion, a commitment to a sustainable environment, and international and intercultural understanding. It provides people with the critical knowledge, abilities and skills that are needed to explore and solve problems that occur both locally and globally.
Education is a public good: it can fulfil its mission only if it is owned by societies as a whole and access to it is guaranteed by public authorities irrespective of their gender, faith, ethnic, cultural or economic background or physical or intellectual capacities.
Education is necessary for employability and economic development. A sustained focus on education leads to an increase in a country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Economies depend on the public school systems to produce an educated workforce — an especially important role in the knowledge society and economy of the 21st Century. High-quality school systems also help attract qualified employees.
However, education is much more than learning how to write and calculate or acquire computer literacy. There are significant social outcomes that cannot be overlooked – the longer that young people stay in education, the better health, political interest and interpersonal trust they develop.