02 June 2010, Dhaka. An agreement was signed with BRAC today under which the Netherlands will provide €18.75 million in support of "Education for All: Delivering on Access and Quality" activities. The duration of the agreement is till 31 December 2012 and the contribution will be pooled with the funds coming from DFID, CIDA, AusAID and OxfamNovib.
The signatories at the BRAC Centre agreement ceremony were H.E. Mr. Alphons Hennekens, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Chairperson of BRAC. Mr. Abu Alam Md. Shahid Khan, Secretary, Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MoPME) was the guest speaker on the occasion.
In his speech, the Dutch Ambassador pointed out that BRAC`s education programme provides complementary services which are closely linked with the formal education system. He highlighted the results of BRAC`s Education Programme 2004-2009 and congratulated BRAC, its education staff and its partner NGOs for these achievements. The Ambassador commended Government`s approval of the new National Education Policy as a framework and foundation for a diverse but unified system of quality education for all Bangladeshi children.
Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, in his speech, reiterated the Ambassador`s message that BRAC`s activities in education are to support the Government to help achieve Bangladesh`s Education for All (EFA) goals within 2015. BRAC will focus on ensuring quality and reducing drop outs, essential for achieving EFA, and reaching underserved and hard-to-reach communities such as in the haors, chars, the Chittagong Hill Tracts and urban slums. He underscored the need for improving quality of secondary education for the development of Bangladesh`s human resources and the role of IT in education.
The Secretary-in-Charge of the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education, Mr. Abu Alam Md. Shahid Khan, emphasised the importance of strengthening public-private partnerships between Government and organisations like BRAC. He pointed out that Government aims at quality education for all children and appreciates the efforts and experiences of BRAC in education.