It’s good that job creation is at the top of the agenda at the G20 summit in Mexico today. But young people need the right skills to do those jobs – and now they’re demanding that world leaders finally give serious attention to developing skills.
At the G8 and G20 Youth Summits in Washington this month, a key message was that the unemployment crisis must be combated through education.
Last time G20 leaders met to discuss global growth and jobs, that key ingredient was missing. Without making sure young people get the skills they need, creating jobs won’t be enough, as Director of the Education for All Global Monitoring Report, Pauline Rose, pointed out on this blog in November.
To prepare for the 2012 Global Monitoring Report, which will focus on skills development, we invited young people to discuss these issues on the blog Youth, Skills & Work. Many have expressed frustration over governments’ failure to provide the right skills.
“Nowadays, we have to develop our own way to learn and to be ready for the job market, because university doesn’t teach ‘the jobs-skills-required’ course”, one blogger wrote. Many more young people around the world do not even make it to university, and have even less of a chance of getting skills needed for decent jobs.
These calls for action need to be taken seriously. If governments and the private sector fail to give young people a chance to acquire the right skills, they risk perpetuating or worsening inequalities, losing opportunities for dynamic growth and fuelling the kind of youth frustration that has boiled over into protest movements across the world.
All too often, access to skills is unequal, compounding the disadvantage that poor and marginalized young people face. That’s why the 2012 EFA Global Monitoring Report, to be released on October 16, will take a special interest in identifying and understanding what access marginalized young people have to skills development that can lead to jobs that can lift them out of poverty.