Intelligent CXO Issue 17 | Page 20


Nearly three-quarters of young people – aged between 15 and 24 in 92 countries – are off-track to acquire the skills needed for employment , according to a new report published by the Education Commission and UNICEF and supported by Generation Unlimited .

Recovering learning : Are children and youth on track in skills development ? features analyses on skills development in early childhood and among children of primary school age and youth . The data highlight low levels of skills among children and young people across all age groups , with young people in low-income countries the least likely to have the skills required to thrive – particularly in future employment opportunities , decent work and entrepreneurship .
“ An inspired , skilled generation of children and young people is critical for prosperity , progression and the success of societies and economies . Yet , the majority of children and young people have been failed by their education systems , leaving them uneducated , uninspired and unskilled – the perfect storm for unproductivity ,” said Robert Jenkins , Director of Education , UNICEF . “ Investment in costeffective , proven solutions to fast-track learning and skills development for today ’ s generation and future generations is urgently needed to address this crisis .”
With high rates of out-of-school young people and low attainment of secondary-level skills , countries worldwide are facing a skills crisis , with the majority of youth unprepared to take part in today ’ s workforce , the report notes .
Deep disparities across countries and among those from the poorest communities are increasing inequalities . In at least one in three low-income countries with available data , more than 85 % of young people are off-track in the secondary-level , digital and job-specific skills attainment .
" To give young people the best chance to succeed and recover learning losses due to the pandemic , we need to support them holistically ," added Liesbet Steer , Executive Director , Education Commission . “ But we can ' t recover what we don ' t measure . We need to know where children and youth are in building the range of skills they need and monitor their progress .”
Data from 77 countries showed that less than three-quarters of children aged between three and five years old are developmentally on track in at least three out of the four domains of literacy-numeracy , physical , social-emotional , and learning . At approximately 10 years old , the majority of children in low- and middle-income countries are unable to read and understand a simple text . These foundational skills are the building blocks for further learning and skills development , the report notes .
Intelligent CXO spoke to three leading experts about how organisations can present opportunities to young people by training them and getting them into employment . . .


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