24 Aug 2005

Cook Islands questions UNESCO figures

3:31 pm on 24 August 2005

The Cook Islands Secretary for the Ministry of Education, Ken Matheson, says he'll be seeking answers from UNESCO as to how they could release their Education for All global monitoring report with so many inaccuracies.

The report claims that the Cook Islands has a 50 percent dropout among primary school children, and that public expenditure on education at 0.4 percent is the lowest of all countries within East Asia and the Pacific region surveyed by UNESCO.

Mr Matheson says the figures given by UNESCO does not match up with the expenditure figures they submitted for the years 1992 to 1997.

"and that range was 3.2 to 7.2 percent of GDP being spent. The average is 5.2 percent and if we compare that with the figures that UNESCO then those figures are higher than Australia, Japan, Korea and Singapore as listed in their report, assuming they were correct in those countries' figures."

Ken Matheson.