A High-Quality Education for All

  • Colin PowerEmail author
Part of the Education in the Asia-Pacific Region: Issues, Concerns and Prospects book series (EDAP, volume 20)


Our shared agenda was, and still is, that of working with governments, nongovernment organizations and educators throughout the world to ensure that all children are provided with an education that is effective, relevant and of high quality. But what is an effective, relevant, high-quality education? The question itself is value laden: how it is answered reflects one’s values and philosophy of education. While education systems do vary in terms of approach and emphasis, there is general agreement about the overall purposes of education. These are set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on Discrimination in Education and are enshrined in the constitution and legislation of most nations. As Article 26 of the Universal Declaration insists, “Everyone has the right to education…” which is to be “free” and “compulsory in the elementary stages”. The declaration and conventions go on to specify the aims of education, thus to indicate the criteria by which the effectiveness, quality and relevance of education are to be judged (Power, UNESCO’s response to the challenge of creating unity in diversity. In: Campbell J (ed.) Creating our common future, UNESCO/Berghahn Books, Paris, 2001; Soc Alternatives, 24(2), 13–18, 2005).


Basic Education Basic Learning Universal Declaration Effective School Elementary Stage 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of QueenslandSt. Lucia BrisbaneAustralia

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