NEW YORK, Sept. 23, 2015 (Antara/PRNewswire) -- More than twenty world leaders, including five former presidents and prime ministers and three Nobel Prize recipients, have been appointed to a new International Commission on Financing Global Education Opportunity to reverse the lack of financing for education around the world. The Commission, supported by the Government of Norway and Prime Minister Erna Solberg, will review the future of global education which currently leaves 124 million young people out of school.

The selection of this diverse group of individuals comes at a crucial time when more children are out of school now than a year ago and increased conflict has forced millions of children out of the classrooms to become refugees with no prospects of education. The Commission will explore how over the next 15 to 20 years, education could lead to greater economic growth, better health outcomes, and improved global security.

The Commission is co-convened by the Norwegian Prime Minister alongside President Michelle Bachelet of Chile, President Joko Widodo of Indonesia, President Peter Mutharika of Malawi and the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova.

Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education, has been appointed Chair of the Commission.

Prime Minister Solberg said, "Education is key to fighting poverty, and I believe educating girls is the single most powerful investment for development. When you educate a girl, you educate a nation. I am confident that the Commission will play an important role in mobilizing the resources needed to achieve education for development set out for 2030 and beyond."

This Commission includes the following leaders:

  • Anant Agarwal, CEO, EdX
  • Jose Manuel Barroso, Former President, European Commission
  • Felipe Calderon, Former President, Mexico
  • Kristin Clemet, Managing Director, Civita
  • Aliko Dangote, CEO, Dangote Group
  • Julia Gillard, Chair, Global Partnership for Education and Former Prime Minister, Australia
  • Baela Raza Jamil, Director Programs for the Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi
  • Lee Ju-ho, Former Korean Minister of Education
  • Jim Kim, President, World Bank Group
  • Anthony Lake, Executive Director, UNICEF
  • Jack Ma, Founder and Executive Chairman, Alibaba Group
  • Graca Machel, Founder, Graca Machel Trust
  • Strive Masiyiwa, CEO, Econet Wireless
  • Teopista Birungi Mayanja, Founder, Uganda National Teachers Union
  • Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Former Minister of Finance, Nigeria
  • Kailash Satyarthi, Founder, Bachpan Bachao Andolan
  • Amartya Sen, Professor, Harvard University
  • Theo Sowa, CEO, African Women's Development Fund
  • Lawrence Summers, President Emeritus, Harvard University; 71st Secretary of the Treasury for President Clinton and Director of the National Economic Council for President Obama
  • Helle Thorning-Schmidt, Former Prime Minister, Denmark

Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, Minister of International Cooperation and Development for the United Arab Emirates will join the inaugural meeting of the Commission. Jeffrey Sachs, United Nations Secretary-General's Special Advisor, will join the third meeting of the Commission. Malala Yousafzai will join the Commission's youth panel.

The Commission will meet on September 29 during the United Nations General Assembly to start building the economic case to inspire and persuade world leaders to action. In September 2016, the Commission will report to the Co-conveners and the Secretary-General of United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, who has agreed to receive the report and act on its recommendations.

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Christy Welder
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