Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all


Progress has also been tough in some developing regions due to high levels of poverty, armed conflicts and other emergencies. In Western Asia and North Africa, the ongoing armed conflict has seen an increase in the number of children out of school. This is a worrying trend. While Sub-Saharan Africa made the greatest progress in primary school enrolment among all developing regions – from 52 percent in 1990, up to 78 percent in 2012 – large disparities still remain. Children from the poorest households are up to four times more likely to be out of school than those of the richest households. Disparities between rural and urban areas also remain high.

Achieving inclusive and quality education for all reaffirms the belief that education is one of the most powerful and proven vehicles for sustainable development. This goal ensures that all girls and boys complete free primary and secondary schooling by 2030. It also aims to provide equal access to affordable vocational training, to eliminate gender and wealth disparities, and achieve universal access to a quality higher education.


Animal exploitation acts as a hindrance to the availability and quality of education in poorer countries where children are pulled out of school to work in fields growing commodity crops for livestock, or directly watching over livestock. In higher education, decades of animal testing have provided misleading results and hindered human knowledge. Furthermore, large companies with a vested interest in continuing this system of animal exploitation are funders of research and will prevent the publication of research that is negative to their commercial interests. Nutritional information is skewed towards the glorification of animal products, again through funding and lobbying of governments to favor animal products in dietary guidelines. Children are routinely denied the knowledge of where their food comes from and the heavy cost on the environment and on the animals themselves of the industrialized system of animal exploitation is downplayed or ignored altogether. Much of this secrecy is imposed through Ag-Gag laws which prevent investigations of these facilities which would allow the truth to come out. Were society more educated on this issue, people might make better choices as to their nutrition.


Further Reading:

Goal 4 : Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform (United Nations website)

“Child Labor in Agriculture” – Worldwide, the majority of child labour is found in the agriculture sector (71%). Today, 108 million boys and girls are engaged in child labour in crop production, livestock, forestry, fisheries or aquaculture –

“What Type Of Work Do Child Laborers Do” – PDF –

“The Use Of Animals In Primary And Secondary Education” – Ethics –

“Reproducing Dominion: Emotional Apprenticeship in the 4-H Youth Livestock Program” – (An understanding of the means through which people learn to justify the treatment of the animals known as “livestock” can shed light on the mechanisms involved in generic processes of inequality.) Colter Ellis and Leslie Irvine, 2010 –