Our Foreign Secretary is known to be very hot on education. As Mayor he would tour London junior schools, telling the pupils “Work hard, grab your opportunities! ” with conspicuous success.Writing in the Standard, a concerned Boris Johnson said: “Today, the appalling truth is that about 61 million girls between the ages of five and 14 are deprived of an education across the world. “In countries like Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan, there are millions of girls who never get the chance to enter a classroom. In some places, the schools do not exist; in others, prejudice, violence and poverty deny girls the education that is their right. Whatever the reason, this failure to allow every girl to attend school is holding back entire societies.”This is constructive and forward thinking from Boris. He has picked one of his department’s most senior officials, Joanna Roper, to take on this role. She will lead a renewed drive to ensure girls around the globe get the chance to go to school.
Ms Roper heads the FCO Women’s Association and has been involved in a series of initiatives to promote female role models including a “Dangerous Women” event to highlight individuals who have worked in precarious places including Kabul in Afghanistan and Sanaa in Yemen.
This is a brilliant idea by Boris Johnson and a initiative that is sorely needed in the world. 61 million girls never get the chance to go school? I hope that Ms. Roper will keep us informed of her progress, because nothing could be more inspiring than to see that 61 million number go down and down!
Boris Johnson writes in the Standard on his initiative here.