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Ministers of Education of the Americas Agree to Build Together an Inter-American Education Agenda

  February 6, 2015

The Eighth Inter-American Meeting of Ministers of Education, jointly organized by the Government of Panama and the Organization of American States (OAS), concluded Thursday in Panama City with the adoption of a resolution on the building of and Inter-American Education Agenda.

The final resolution of the meeting expresses the will of the countries of the Americas to work together “on building an Inter-American Education Agenda to provide the member states with a forum for policy dialogue in order to define priority lines of action to guide the Inter-American cooperation in education over the next five years according to the following existing mandates: quality, inclusive, and equitable education; strengthening of the teaching profession; and comprehensive early childhood care.

The document considers as “crosscutting elements” the promotion of the teaching of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics at the primary and secondary levels; the use of information and communication technologies in the teaching and learning process; and the promotion of the principles of gender, equity and inclusion in the design of educational policies, strategies, and programs.

In her words during the conclusion of the event, the Executive Secretary for Integral Development of the OAS, Sherry Tross, highlighted that “it is impossible to speak seriously about Prosperity with Equity in the Americas –the slogan of the Seventh Summit of the Americas in April- without addressing quality education as well as capacity building. Both education and enhanced capacity are cornerstones for development, and essential areas of focus as our countries seek to better respond to both the structural shifts in the global demand for talent and labor and the pressing challenge of inequality.”

“This meeting of OAS Ministers of Education has served as the perfect launching point for our region’s new hemispheric agenda on education,” said Executive Secretary Tross. “This meeting serves as a valuable and innovative contribution as we continue to assess the linkages between educational growth and social inclusion in order to meet growing workforce developmental needs.”

The Eighth Inter-American Meeting of Ministers of Education of the Americas brought together the Ministers of Education of the region to discuss the theme “Building an Inter-American Education Agenda: Education with Equity for Prosperity.” Specifically, the ministers received a report on the work of the Inter-American Committee on Education from 2012 to 2014 and discussed the following issues: quality, equity and inclusion in education; teacher education and professional development; comprehensive early childhood education care; mechanisms for building an Inter-American Education Agenda; cooperation practices in building the agenda; and different perspectives on an institutional framework for education in the Inter-American system. The contributions of the meeting will be sent to the Summit of the Americas, which will bring together the Heads of State and Government of the 35 members states of the OAS in April.

Panama, in its capacity as Chair of the Inter-American Committee on Education, offered its cooperation for the opening of a “Virtual Platform of Educational Cooperation of the Americas.” The platform offers a tool to guide and provide feedback on the Inter-American dialogue and cooperation with the objective of learning from the educational solutions developed by different countries to address their main challenges in the area, contribute to the articulation and distribution of the resources – human, material, institutional, and economic – dedicated to education, and improve the communication and circulation of information among member states on priority educational issues.

In the framework of the meeting, the OAS and the Ministry of Education of Bolivia signed an agreement to promote collaboration in the training of educators in the South American country.

The agreement signed calls for “mutual cooperation to optimize resources and unite technical, administrative, academic and human efforts to hold joint actions to contribute to the strengthening of the constant training of Bolivian educators at all levels, and the technical improvement of those who train educators, in order to broaden the opportunities of access to quality postgraduate studies.” The document was signed in the presence of 24 representatives of Ministries of Education of the OAS member states.

A gallery of photos of the event is available here.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at

Reference: E-029/15