Relevant UK policies on Global Citizenship Education and Sustainable Development

Non-statistical indicator

Education in the United Kingdom is devolved, and so there is some variance in the approach to Education for Sustainable Development. We have identified relevant links to official curriculums –


There is no statutory requirement for Sustainable Development Education in the National Curriculum in England. However, Sustainable Development education forms part of a range of subjects in the National Curriculum. There are also a number of government funded programmes that schools and pupils can choose to participate in to enhance their learning of sustainable development.

Northern Ireland

Education For Sustainable Development is part of the required minimum content for Key Stage 3.


Learning for Sustainability is a cross-curricular approach, that weaves together global citizenship, sustainable development education and outdoor learning.


Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship provides learners, at all stages of education, an understanding of the broad themes of Sustainable Development.

This table provides metadata for the actual indicator available from UK statistics closest to the corresponding global SDG indicator. Please note that even when the global SDG indicator is fully available from UK statistics, this table should be consulted for information on national methodology and other UK-specific metadata information.

Indicator available

Relevant UK policies on Global Citizenship Education and Sustainable Development

Indicator description
Geographical coverage
Unit of measurement
Available disaggregations
Other information

This indicator is being used as an approximation of the UN SDG Indicator. Where possible, we will work to identify or develop UK data to meet the global indicator specification. This indicator has been identified in collaboration with topic experts.

Data last updated 03 December 2021
Metadata last updated 03 December 2021

This table provides information on metadata for SDG indicators as defined by the UN Statistical Commission. Complete global metadata is provided by the UN Statistics Division.

Indicator name

Extent to which (i) global citizenship education and (ii) education for sustainable development are mainstreamed in (a) national education policies; (b) curricula; (c) teacher education; and (d) student assessment

Target name

By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development

Global indicator description
UN designated tier

Tier II

UN custodian agency

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization - Institute for Statistics (UNESCO-UIS)

Link to UN metadata United Nations Sustainable Development Goals metadata for target 4.7 opens in a new window