Education is too diverse, complex, and demanding to expect governments alone to be able to meet the vast array of learner needs. The call for a multi-sectoral approach and building new alliances between government, private sector and non-governmental forces was central to the thematic roundtables on "NGOs and Literacy" and "Mobilizing for Education for All." While NGOs expressed their desire to work with governments, donors and private sector entities, they were quick to caution against some misperceptions which view NGOs as a cheap source of labour, additional delivery systems for government-directed objectives, or organisations devoid of their own development agendas and constituents. Partnerships have to be 'genuine,' on an equal footing of mutual respect, beginning from the design end of the development process through the implementation and ex-post evaluation stages. The roundtables on the teacher's role, early child care and grassroots participation brought out a recognition of the vital role of teachers and families in these new partnerships.
New and revitalized partnerships at all levels will be necessary.