Critical gaps in refugee education, only 34% attend secondary school – UNHCR
By Gistflash News
Sept 8, 2021
Two-thirds of refugee children might never get to secondary school, UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) warned on Tuesday, calling for an international effort to confront “critically low” levels of school and university enrolment.
Recent progress “is now under threat,” said UNHCR chief Filippo Grandi, describing it as “a task we cannot afford to shirk”.
The call comes as UNHCR launched its 2021 Education Report, “Staying The Course: The Challenges Facing Refugee Education”, which highlights the stories of young refugees around the world as they try to keep learning despite unprecedented disruptions triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to UNHCR data gathered in 40 countries, the 2019-2020 gross secondary level enrolment rate for refugees stood at only 34 per cent.
In almost every country, the rate trails that of host community children.
While COVID-19 has been disruptive for all children, the report points out that for young refugees who already face significant obstacles to getting into school, it could dash all hopes of their getting an education.
The data also shows that from March 2019 to 2020, gross enrolment rates for refugees at primary level stood at 68 per cent.
Enrolment in higher education was at five per cent, a 2-point rise year on year and a growth that represents transformational change for thousands of refugees and their communities.
The increase offers hope and encouragement to younger refugees facing daunting challenges to accessing an education, UNHCR said, while warning that compared to global figures, this level remains low.
According to the report secondary school should be a time of growth, development and opportunity as it increases job prospects, health and independence.
It also strengthens the leadership of vulnerable young people, bolstering them to be less likely to be pressured into child labour.
However, without a major increase in access at secondary level, the target set by UNHCR and partners for 15 per cent of refugees enrolled in higher education by 2030, called 15by30, will remain out of reach.
The right of all children, including refugees, to access secondary education and be part of national educational systems must be guaranteed by all States, UNHCR said.
The agency acknowledged that nations hosting large numbers of displaced people needed building capacity assistance, including learning materials, facilities for teenage girls, and investment in technology and connectivity to close the digital divide.
Magnitude 5.8 earthquake hits Greek island of Crete
By Gistflash News
Sept 27, 2021
A magnitude 5.8 strong quake hit Greece’s Crete island on Monday, according to the Geodynamics Institute of the National Observatory of Athens.
The tremor’s epicentre was located at a depth of 10 km, some 25 km south of the city of Heraklion, the capital of Crete island, while aftershocks up to 4.3 magnitude have followed, according to Greek scientists.
Material damage has been reported, with no injuries until now, local officials told Greek national news agency AMNA.
Earlier, the Euro Mediterranean Seismological Centre put the quake’s magnitude at 6.2, which was later revised to 6.0.
WHO investigators seeking COVID-19 origin going back to China
By Gistflash News
Sept 27, 2021
The World Health Organisation (WHO) is launching a new investigation into the origins of COVID-19, months after an earlier probe ended without drawing firm conclusions, according to a report published.
WHO was putting together a team of some 20 scientists, who will be charged with finding new evidence in China and other locales, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The group will examine whether the virus emerged from a laboratory, a theory that has been angrily rejected by China.
In December 2020, WHO investigators began visits to Wuhan, China, where the first known outbreak of the virus took place.
But their March 2021 report said they had gotten insufficient information from Chinese scientists to answer key questions about COVID-19’s origin.
In August, U.S. intelligence agencies issued a separate report saying they also could not make firm conclusions about COVID-19’s origins.
Florida Gov. appoints Nigerian-American, Joseph Ladapo Surgeon-General
By Gistflash News
Sept 25, 2021
Ron DeSantis, Florida Governor, U.S. has appointed a Nigerian-American, Dr Joseph Ladapo, as Florida Surgeon-General and Secretary of the Department of Health.
DeSantis in a statement posted on the Florida Department of Health website, stated that he was pleased to announce Ladapo for the position.
“I am pleased to announce that Ladapo will lead the Florida department of health as our state’s next surgeon-general
“Ladapo comes to us by way of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, with a superb background.”
According to him, Ladapo has had both a remarkable academic and medical career with a strong emphasis in health policy research.
The governor said: ” Ladapo will bring great leadership to the department of health, ” thanking both Dr Scott Rivkees and Dr Shamarial Roberson for their hard work on behalf of all Floridians.
Lieutenant-Governor, Jeanette Nuñez described Ladapo’s as, “an excellent choice to serve as our next surgeon general.
“Ladapo has impeccable credentials and a strong vision to effectively serve the people of Florida at the helm of our public health agency.
“Through his service to our state, we will continue Florida’s work to advance our public health goals,” Nuñez said.
Ladapo said he is honored to have been chosen by DeSantis to serve as Florida’s next surgeon-general.
“We must make health policy decisions rooted in data and not in fear.
“From California, I have observed the different approaches taken by governors across the country and I have been impressed by DeSantis’ leadership and determination,” he said.
The new surgeon-general said he was impressed by DeSantis’ leadership to ensure that Floridians were afforded all opportunities to maintain their health and wellness, while preserving their freedoms as Americans.
“It is a privilege to join his team and serve the people of Florida,” he said.
Ladapo was recently granted a professorship at the University of Florida (UF) College of Medicine.
Prior to joining UF, he served as an associate professor at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA),caring for hospitalised patients.
He is a graduate of Wake Forest University, who also holds an MD from Harvard Medical School and a PhD in Health Policy from Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.
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