Draft Platform for Action
B. Unequal access to and inadequate educational opportunities
Strategic objective B.1. Ensure equal access to education

Actions to be taken

82. By Governments:

(a) [Attain the goals of equal access to education without distinction as to sex, race, national origin, age or disability, or any other form of discrimination and ensure that procedures to address grievances are established;]

(b) By the year 2000, universal access to basic education and completion of primary education by at least 80 per cent of primary school-age children; closing the gender gap in primary and secondary school education by the year 2005; universal primary education in all countries before the year 2015;

(c) Eliminate gender disparities in access to all areas of tertiary education by ensuring that women have equal access to career development, training, scholarship and fellowship, and by adopting positive action when appropriate;

(d) Create a gender-sensitive educational system in order to ensure equal educational and training opportunities and full and equal participation of women in educational administration and policy- and decision-making;

(e) Provide - in collaboration with parents, non-governmental organizations, including youth organizations, communities and the private sector - young women with academic and technical training, career planning, leadership and social skills and work experience to prepare them to participate fully in society;

(f) Increase enrolment and retention rates of girls by allocating appropriate budgetary resources and by enlisting the support of parents and the community, as well as through campaigns, flexible school schedules, incentives, scholarships and other means to minimize the costs of girls' education to their families [and to facilitate parents' ability to choose quality education for the girl child];

[by ensuring that the rights of women and girls to freedom of conscience and religion are respected in educational institutions] [through repealing any discriminatory laws or legislation based on religion, race or culture];

(g) Promote an educational setting that eliminates all barriers that impede the schooling of pregnant adolescents and young mothers, including, as appropriate, affordable and physically accessible child-care facilities and parental education to encourage those who are responsible for the care of their children and siblings during their school years, to return to, or continue with and complete schooling;

(h) [Improve the equality of education to ensure that women of all ages are provided with the knowledge, reasoning ability, skills and ethical values required to develop their full capacities in health and dignity and to participate fully in the social, economic and political process of development. In this regard, women and girls should be considered a priority group;]

(i) Make available non-discriminatory and gender-sensitive professional school counselling and career education programmes to encourage girls to pursue academic and technical curricula in order to widen their future career opportunities;

(j) Encourage ratification of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights 12/ where they have not already done so.

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