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Equal Education


SDDirect is a leading provider of technical advice, support and research on equal education. This includes on girls’ education; disability inclusion; Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and safeguarding; education in Fragile and Conflict-affected Situations (FCAS); citizen voice and accountability; and monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL). 

Two girls sitting on the pavement, looking at a computer.

What is Equal Education?   


Our vision for education is a world that provides high quality, safe and inclusive education for all. 

The 4th Sustainable Development Goal is to ensure an inclusive and equitable quality education and promotion of lifelong learning opportunities for all.  However, millions of children around the world are still unable to access education due to poverty, conflict or natural disasters. Girls, children with disabilities, and other marginalised groups are the worst affected. Our approach is to ensure that all children, including girls, children with disabilities, marginalised young people and their communities have safe and equitable access to a good quality education. We ensure education is inclusive for all, which will lead to a better education for everyone.  

Our work in this area 


  • Our portfolio of work in Equal Education addresses both supply- and demand-side barriers and spans the following interlinked areas mainstreaming Gender Equality, Disability and Social Inclusion (GEDSI) into education systems and programmes 
  • Developing a stronger understanding and approach to safeguarding across the education sector, within schools and Ministries   

  • Prevention and response to school related GBV, with a focus on gendered and intersectional analysis  

  • Improving equitable access to education in FCA situations through addressing barriers 

  • Supporting more accountable governance in the education sector  

  • Ensuring the voices of girls children and young people with disabilities, and structurally marginalised young people and their communities are listened to and reflected in the solutions developed  

Effective research, monitoring, evaluation and learning to share evidence on what works to achieve equitable and inclusive access to a safe, quality education for all.

All our work is grounded in context-specific experience, knowledge and analysis. We focus on detailed analysis of gender, power dynamics, the impact of conflict and violence, and barriers to equal access and inclusion.
We deliver education programming in a diverse range of country contexts, including development and humanitarian settings. We take an intersectional approach to understanding how key structural and social factors overlap and create barriers for certain groups in accessing education.
We have a strong track record of providing technical leadership and support on an integrated approach to gender equality, social inclusion and safeguarding on large-scale education programmes.

If you would like to hear more about our work on Equal Education, please reach out to Danielle Cornish-Spencer, Head of Equal Education Portfolio, 

The Importance of Collaborative Non-Government and Government Efforts to advance Equal Education: Enhancing Gender Equality and Social Inclusion


The Importance of Non-Government and Government Collaborative Efforts to advance Equal Education: Enhancing Gender Equality and Social Inclusion

With the Education World Forum taking place next week in London, 120 Ministers from 114 countries will come together to try to answer the forum’s overarching question: ‘How should we prioritise policy and implementation for Stronger, Bolder, Better, Education?’

What works to prevent online and offline child sexual exploitation and abuse? Review of national education strategies in East Asia and the Pacific

This review of national education strategies in East Africa and the Pacific explores the current and comparative risks for under-18s in the region from online sexual abuse and exploitation. It looks at the specific vulnerabilities and drivers for abuse, and how these can be prevented through education strategies.

Solutions to the Covid-19 education crisis: a view from UK-based specialist education providers

This briefing paper aims to present the views of the Education Working Group (EWG) of British Expertise International (BEI) working on the frontline of the "Covid-19 education crisis". The paper shares the EWG's experience and expertise, and outlines interventions to the crisis, and how EWG members might be able to support in implementing these.

Why is LGBTQI+ inclusive education so important and what can be done?

When I think back to my time at school here in the UK, I struggle to remember a point in which the curriculum or general personal, social, health and economics (PSHE) sessions, ever included discussion about gender identity and sexual orientation. During sex education in both Year 6 and Year 9, there was no reference to LGBTQI+ people for example. This was most likely because of Section 28, the damaging legislation that prohibited discussion of LGBTQ+ in schools between 1988 and 2003 in the UK.