Education policy and planning that empowers: Eradication of poverty and inequalities in education

Wing On LEE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This paper reviews trends in educational development over the last two decades since the World Conference on Education for All (EFA) was held in Jomtien, Thailand. The review includes various international analyses conducted by UNESCO, Asian Development Bank and the World Bank. While acknowledging some obvious developments in educational enrolments and schooling quality, this review also finds that educational provision to date is still far from the goals of Education for All. The paper highlights important policy issues to be addressed in order to achieve the EFA goals, with an emphasis on the eradication of poverty and gender inequalities. However, the paper argues of all the education reform efforts initiated by various governments, the attention towards empowerment is most imperative. Without empowerment, education reform initiatives will only be seen as window dressing and provide no prospects of achieving the EFA goals. In particular, whilst there are efforts to eradicate poverty and inequalities, continued poverty takes place when many of the reforms require the investment of additional resources that the lower-middle class groups are deprived of. Copyright © 2007 Asia-Pacific Centre of Education for International Understanding.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-105
JournalJournal of Education for International Understanding
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2007



Lee, W. O. (2007). Education policy and planning that empowers: Eradication of poverty and inequalities in education. Journal of Education for International Understanding, 3, 93-105.


  • Education for all
  • Universal primary education
  • Millennium development goals
  • Literacy society
  • Empowerment
  • New poverty