At least 1.2 million children across Lebanon have had their education disrupted for more than one year, with many having last attended school in October 2019, following protests and civil unrest. This is impacting Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian children alike. With the country slipping deeper into an economic crisis, a safe and systematic school reopening in Lebanon is difficult to imagine. Even before this, children across the country already had lower than average literacy and numeracy rates in the Middle East region.
The longer children are out of school, the further their learning outcomes will drop, and the greater the potential for an increase in incidents of child labour and child marriage, among other protection concerns. The limited data on school enrolment, retention, and current access to learning across Lebanon is limiting any ability to plan and effectively deliver education interventions. It is vital that schools open as soon as it is safe to do so, and that all children are able to access education regardless of their background or gender. There should also be increased investment in appropriate data collection on children’s learning in Lebanon and strengthened coordination in the education sector to respond to the education crisis without delay.
This brief by Save the Children calls for global attention and action on the unfolding education crisis in Lebanon. It draws from national and global data sources, sectoral recommendations, and the experiences of children in the country.