Education for Rural people


the role of EDUCATION,

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Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
Rome, 2009


Table of Contents
Executive Summary

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ERP Background and Rationale
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    The purpose of ERP
    A partnership
    What do we mean by rural?
    Rural people are still a (neglected) majority in less developed regions
    Rural people are the majority of the world’s poor
    Why focus on education for rural people?
    Message of UN Secretary-General on EFA - 25 September 2008

Challenges and Responses
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Challenge 1: Access to education and training
Challenge 2: Quality of education and training
Challenge 3: Decentralization and community involvement
Challenge 4: Gender-responsive learning environments
Challenge 5: Organizational and institutional effi ciency
Challenge 6: Accommodating non-traditional learners
Challenge 7: Redefi ning agricultural education
Challenge 8: Skills training for rural people
Challenge 9: Recruitment and retention of extension and school staff
Challenge 10: Effective pro-rural policies

The ERP Partnership
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    ERP Partnership resources
    Research and knowledge management and sharing
    Policy dialogue and capacity development
    Reasons for success
    The ERP Partnership way forward

Conclusions and Key Policy Considerations
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Conclusions and key policy considerations reached in this book
Final Communiqué of the Fifth Meeting of the High-Level Group on EFA

Photo Credits
Selected Publications on ERP
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This book was developed to assist policy makers dealing with rural poverty, food insecurity and education challenges confronting rural people. It seeks to address the correlation between education, training, empowerment and food security, mainly through a number of examples from all over the world. It is about strengthening the capacity of rural people to achieve food security. The broad background is that studies leading to the formulation of the Millennium Development Goals in 2000 have shown the potential that poor people have to make their living if the right conditions are created. The challenge for the international community is to identify barriers and to create conditions for rural people to change and improve their situation. In this perspective, the way to reach food security is to strengthen the capacity of poor people. The concept of capacity is closely associated with notions such as empowerment. It is generally agreed that education in all its forms is one important pillar in such a strategy. The role of education is not only to impart knowledge and skills but also to contribute to the empowerment of people by improving their self-confi dence, widen their frame of reference and give them the tools to participate in wider processes of social and economic change.

The designations employed and the presentation of material in this information product do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) concerning the legal or development status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. The mention of specifi c companies or products of manufacturers, whether or not these have been patented, does not imply that these have been endorsed or recommended by FAO in preference to others of a similar nature that are not mentioned.

All rights reserved. Reproduction and dissemination of material in this information product for educational or other non-commercial purposes are authorized without any prior written permission from the copyright holders provided the source is fully acknowledged. Reproduction of material in this information product for resale or other commercial purposes is prohibited without written permission of the copyright holders. Applications for such permission should be addressed to the Chief, Electronic Publishing Policy and Support Branch, Communication Division, FAO, Viale delle Terme di Caracalla, 00100 Rome, Italy or by e-mail to

ISBN 978-92-5-106237-1