Is Investing in Girls’ Education Beneficial for Growth?
The question “is investing in girls’ education beneficial for growth?” has been instrumental in the fight for girls’ education in the developing world. Here are three reasons why this investment is essential.
Education changes the future.
When girls receive an education, their future changes. Many girls around the world grow up in families who have experienced generation after generation of poverty, and education provides a way to break that cycle. Educated girls can see past their current circumstances of poverty to a future career where they can earn a sustainable income and rise out of poverty. They will not be relegated to manual labor, but will be qualified for better opportunities.
When girls are educated, they are less likely to marry early and start families before they are ready. The Global Partnership for Education estimates that if all girls in sub-Saharan Africa and South and West Asia were educated, “child marriage would fall by 64 percent, from almost 2.9 million to just over 1 million.”1
Education changes a family.
Literacy and education in general can change the trajectory of a family. When parents see the potential of their daughters, these girls play a large part in the future of their family.
Education changes a community.
“Worldwide, entire villages with increasing levels of literacy are making social and economic gains when even just a small percentage of the villagers learn to read and write. Much data (a preponderance of which is examined under the general category of education) gives good cause to make the assumption that learning to read and write is one of the ‘great miracle cures.’”2
“More educated girls lead to an increase in female leaders, lower levels of population growth and the subsequent reduction of pressures related to climate change. The power of girls’ education on national economic growth is undeniable: a one percentage point increase in female education raises the average gross domestic product (GDP) by 0.3 percentage points and raises annual GDP growth rates by 0.2 percentage points.”3
1 Bourne, Jo. “Why Educating Girls Makes Economic Sense.” Global Partnership for Education. 6 March 2014. https://www.globalpartnership.org/blog/why-educating-girls-makes-economic-sense#:~:text=The%20power%20of%20girls’%20education,rates%20by%200.2%20percentage%20points.
2 Mains, Karen Burton. “Literacy: One of the Great Miracle Cures.” GFA World. September 3 2019. https://www.gfa.org/special-report/literacy-miracle-cure-illiteracy.
3 Bourne, Jo. “Why Educating Girls Makes Economic Sense.” Global Partnership for Education. 6 March 2014. https://www.globalpartnership.org/blog/why-educating-girls-makes-economic-sense#:~:text=The%20power%20of%20girls’%20education,rates%20by%200.2%20percentage%20points.