The concepts of education reform and academic leadership vary across different cultures and parts of the world. Today, nearly 70 million children across the globe cannot get a basic education, which hampers progress toward gender equality. Of primary school-aged children, there are 31 million girls not attending school, and 17 million of these girls will probably never attend school in their lifetimes. Experts suggest that educating a girl can break cycles of poverty in just one generation, as educated girls marry later, have fewer children, earn higher wages, and support healthier and more prosperous families. Underscoring the grave nature of the issue, statistics suggest children born to a mother who can read and write are 50 percent more likely to survive past the age of 5 years old.
The barriers to educating women are many, including habitation in conflict-ridden countries, entrenched beliefs preventing women from pursuing education, and stunted advances in the status of women in many parts of rural Asia despite the pace of regional development. Join Cherie Blair and a panel of distinguished women in the field of education for a wide-ranging discussion on the importance of women’s education—how it empowers individuals, improves lives, advances societies, and changes the world.