Gender and Girls Education

Gender inclusive education considers the challenges girls and boys face in the developing world—from gender-based violence, to discriminatory social norms, to unintended or early pregnancy.

Reducing gender disparities and increasing access to education for both girls and boys is critical to achieving U.S. national security and foreign policy objectives. Where social norms or other factors make attending school more challenging for girls, promoting equality and female empowerment is fundamental to USAID’s work. Gender inclusive education programming considers the many challenges girls face in the developing world—from poverty, geographical isolation, minority status, disability, early marriage and pregnancy, gender-based violence, and traditional attitudes about the roles of girls and women. Investments in girls’ education in developing countries support U.S. foreign policy, demonstrate American compassion and generosity, drive development efforts, and help reduce extreme poverty. For example, an extra year of secondary school for girls can increase their future earnings by as much as 20 percent. By considering the individual needs of both girls and boys, we equip the world’s youth with the support to succeed in school and work.