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Every Child Ready, Every Child Learning

March 5-7, 2018



Early childhood is the most significant developmental period in life. The World Development Report (WDR) 2018 emphasizes the importance of development in the early years to ensure school readiness. The early years of life are the best opportunity to lay the foundations for a child’s future. By getting it right in early childhood, we plant the seeds for tomorrow’s engaged and active student, productive and skilled worker, and confident and loving parents (COAG 2009b).

While in many middle-income countries average learning levels remain far behind those in high-income countries, in many low-income countries, learning levels are low in an absolute sense. For millions of children, schooling is providing little learning in the early grades or not learning in school. Globally, approximately 125 million children are not acquiring functional literacy or numeracy, even after spending at least four years in school. More than 60 percent of primary school children in developing countries are struggling to meet minimum proficiency benchmark for learning. An estimated 250 million children who attend primary school in developing countries are struggling to read even basic words (UNESCO, 2014).


  • This international conference, Every Child Ready, Every Child Learning will held in Auckland between March 5-7, 2018 and will build on the knowledge-base of school readiness and early literacy and numeracy education that the World Bank has developed over the years by investing early through projects and knowledge and learning products. The focus of this conference will be:

    (i)    school readiness, including children’s physical, language, socio-emotional, and cognitive development;

    (ii)    early grades learning, focusing on literacy and numeracy skills, and

    (iii)   innovative financing and a systems approach to early childhood and primary education.

    A fourth day –  Thursday, March 8 – provides the opportunity for a field visit to relevant education institutions in Auckland. This field visit is optional for conference participants.

    The objectives of the conference are to:

    • Enhance the understanding of school readiness and early grade learning by sharing research findings and experiences around the world regarding enabling government policies;
    • Share good practices of different approaches in the implementation of school readiness and early grades literacy and numeracy and socio-emotional skills interventions; and
    • Explore and discuss innovative financing and service delivery models for school readiness and for improving early grades learning.
  • Speakers include Chief Economist (Human Development) for the World Bank, Director and Manager of Education Global Practice of the World Bank, together with education policy makers, researchers and practitioners from across the globe.



    Participation in the conference is by invitation only.

    Government representatives and organizations that have received a formal invitation from the World Bank Group are requested to submit their online registration via the following form:


    More details

    For all questions regarding the Every Child Ready, Every Child Learning conference, please contact:, or phone +61 2 9235 6461