Rome (Fides Service) - 121 million of the world’s children do not go to school: 56 million boys and 65 million girls are denied the right to education. 83% of the little girls who do not attend school live in Sub-Saharan Africa, Southern Asia and East Asia. According to latest estimates in 70 countries the rate of school enrolment and attendance of girls is below 85%. This was stated in a UNICEF 2004 report on the state of the world’s children released today 11 December in Rome Geneva and Cairo. The highest numbers of primary aged children who do not attend school live in Sub-Saharan African countries: 41 million in 1990 and 45 million in 2002; in this region the number of primary school aged girls who do not attend school rose from 20 million in 1990 to 24 million in 2002.
Here are figures with regard to elementary school enrolment and attendance in the world (1996-2002): Total : 81%; industrialised countries 97%; developing countries 80%; less developed countries 63%; Africa Sub-Saharan: 59%; Southern Asia 74%; Middle East e North Africa 78%; ECO/CSI and Baltic Republics 86%; East Asia e Pacific 92%; Latin America and Caribbean 94%. The percentage of enrolled children in attendance (1996-2002) is as follows: Sub-Saharan Africa: 62% boys 57% girls ; Southern Asia 77% boys, 71% girls; Middle East and North Africa 81% boys, 75% girls; ECO/CSI e and Baltic Republics 88% boys, 83% girls; East Asia and Pacific 93% boys 92% girls; North America and Caribbean 95% boys, 93% girls; WORLD 83% boys, 79% girls.
With regard to Secondary education with the exception of Bhutan, countries the lowest number of girl pupils are in Sub-Saharan African countries Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Ethiopia, Guinea, Niger, Somalia and Tanzania, less than 10%. These regions have a low percentage of women teachers, in certain countries less than 25%, despite recorded increases in numbers of school teachers; in two thirds of Arab countries women are less than half the teaching body. In Latin America and the Caribbean 80% of school teachers are women. (AP) (11/12/2003 Fides Service ; lines:32 words:393)