It is less than a year before the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals on education, and UNESCO - the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization - is warning that not a single target will be met.
The 11th Education for All global monitoring report said that while advances have been made, people in the most marginalised groups are still being denied education opportunities.
A series of goals were agreed by world leaders in 2000. They included commitments to expand early childhood care and education, provide free and compulsory primary education for all, increase adult literacy by 50 percent and improve the quality of education.
But UNESCO says 57 million young children are still out of school and around half of them will never have an education.
The UN body is also worried about what it describes as the "poor quality of education" for those who do make it into the classroom. It says as many as 250 million children cannot read or write - even after four years of primary schooling.
So is the world failing its children? And is teaching being put to the test?
Presenter: Hazem Sika
Jefferson Berriel Pessi, a co-ordinator at Education International - a group that represents 30 million teachers across 171 countries.
Bahram Bekhradnia, the director of the Higher Education Policy Institute, and an adviser to the UK government.
Graeme Bloch, a visiting adjunct professor at the University of Witwatersrand, and author of the book: The Toxic Mix: What's wrong with South Africa's schools and how to fix it.