Parallel Report submitted by the Ghana National Education Campaign Coalition and the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, with the support of the Africa Network Campaign on Education For All, the Privatisation in Education Research Initiative, the Right to Education Initiative, the Global Campaign for Education and Education International to the Pre-sessional Working Group of the Committee on the Rights of the Child on the occasion of the consideration of the List of Issues related to the Periodic Reports of Ghana. This report highlights the issue of privatisation in education in Ghana.

Parallel Report submitted by the National Campaign for Education-Nepal, the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the Sciences Po law school Clinic, and partners, on the occasion of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Nepal during the 23rd session of the UPR Working Group.

This report shows that the current organisation of education system in Nepal, in particular a high level of unregulated private involvement in education, is creating and entrenching segregation in education. Such segregation in itself constitutes a human rights violation and need to be ended. It is also the source of additional other human rights abuses, including discrimination on the grounds of socio-economic background, gender and race, the limitation of the right to free quality education, and the lowering of education quality. This situation is extremely problematic due to the immediate human rights violations it is causing, but also because the injustices it generates contribute to threatening the fragile social cohesion and peace that exist in Nepal.

This report presents our the Right to Education Initiative's accomplishments in 2012.

This report provides analysis of legal minimum ages for education, marriage, employment and criminal responsibility across 187 countries and raises questions regarding the cross-section of these issues and their effect on the right to education. Based on States Parties’ reports to the CRC Committee and analysed through the lens of the 4As, the report stresses the fundamental importance of eliminating contradictory legislation and practices that still undermine the right to education.
 
This report analyses national legislation on the duration of compulsory education and legal safeguards against adult responsibilities infringing on children's education. It shows that children's right to education is under threat from early marriage, child labour and imprisonment. The key question which this report addresses is concordance or discord among different ages at which children should be - or can be - in school, at work, married, or taken before a court and/or in prison. The relationship between school, work, marriage and criminal responsibility should be addressed within child-rights policy in individual countries. However, few countries have elaborated this as yet. Moreover, minimum and maximum ages tend to be set by different laws and are often mutually contradictory. Inconsistency between compulsory education and the full range of children's rights risks jeopardising the full development of the child’s personality, the key aim of education in human rights law.

In spite of the impressive indicators regarding education enrolment and attendance in the occupied Palestinian territoty, access to quality education remains significantly compromised. The educational process has been obstructed and interrupted, and the dignity and safety of students and teaching staff violated in the process. The primary responsibility for this lies with the conflicting parties that continue and prolong a situation of protracted conflict and humanitarian crisis. These violations do not appear as isolated incidents or the unintended consequences of policies and budgetary constraints. Rather, they are the result of systematic targeting and legal discrimination at the levels of the legislature, government, judiciary and the military.

This report does not in itself attempt to document and analyse these violations and systematically document discrimination. Rather, it offers a methodology for how to monitor, analyse and report on the situation. It does so by offering both concepts and tools to allow us to understand, identify and access the relevant legal frameworks and mechanisms that may serve to address violations and bring about change.

The report builds in part on a series of interviews and workshops, conducted in 2011 in both Ramallah and Gaza City under the auspices of UNESCO. These workshops and other informational meetings allowed the Right to Education Initiative to engage in substantial capacity building regarding the human rights approach and to set the scene for the initial stages of a constructive dialogue. The hope is that this report may contribute to renewed action in three main directions: an understanding of the importance of using IHRL to support the Palestinian education system; an inclusion of IHRL into existing advocacy strategies; and an improvement regarding the way education policies and programmes are made.

Key resource
This report provides analysis of legal minimum ages for education, marriage, employment and criminal responsibility across 187 countries and raises questions regarding the cross-section of these issues and their effect on the right to education. Based on States Parties’ reports to the CRC Committee and analysed through the lens of the 4As, the report stresses the fundamental importance of eliminating contradictory legislation and practices that still undermine the right to education. The annotated version contains excerpts from State reports to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.
Key resource

This report provides analysis of legal minimum ages for education, marriage, employment and criminal responsibility across 187 countries and raises questions regarding the cross-section of these issues and their effect on the right to education. Based on States Parties’ reports to the CRC Committee and analysed through the lens of the 4As, the report stresses the fundamental importance of eliminating contradictory legislation and practices that still undermine the right to education.

Key resource

The Right to Education Initiative, with the support of international and British organisations as well as teachers' unions have submitted a report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child about the UK's support of the growth of private actors in education through its development aid: questioning its responsibilities as regards its human rights extra-territorial obligations.

The report raises concern about the increased use of British aid money to support for-profit schools, in particular so-called ‘low-fee’ private schools, which are fuelling inequality, creating segregation and undermining the right to education.

The report finds that the UK’s policies in support of private education through its development aid are problematic and that the country could be violating its extra-territorial obligations under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in two regards:

  • Firstly, the UK’s support for for-profit, fee-charging private schools that do not reach the poorest is questioned in light of the UK’s obligations to fulfil the right to education, including the right to free quality education without discrimination;   
  • Secondly, the UK’s responsibility is questioned in particular in relation to its own impact assessments that have been conducted on its policies of providing support to private schools and which have concluded that projects supporting private education providers are less likely to target the most marginalised, and that more research needs to be carried out on the impact of private schools in developing countries on, among other elements, the efficiency of “low-fee” private schools.

See also the summary and update of the report

This report was commissioned by Right to Education Initiative (RTE) as a stocktaking exercise on RTE’s work on the right to education indicators. The report aims to capture the evolutionary nature of the work, comprising a number of research initiatives. The purpose of the stocktaking exercise is to summarise steps that have been taken to advance RTE’s work on indicators; to highlight achievements in the development and promotion of indicators; to identify lessons learned throughout the process of working on indicators; and to identify recommendations for taking RTE’s work on indicators into the next phase.

This report provides an analysis of support to private sector engagement in Global Partnership for Education (GPE) recipient countries, building off a prior study focusing on GPE decision-making on private schooling. This review includes an analysis of 101 documents relating to the 40 GPE recipient partner countries with active Education Sector Program Implementation Grants (ESPIGs). Country profiles of Haiti, Pakistan, and Uganda are provided in an Appendix, each of which highlights important trends with implications for GPE support to private participation in education.

The report contextualizes private engagement in education from a human rights perspective. Based on a descriptive analysis of Education Sector Plans (ESPs) and ESPIG project documents, it finds that GPE projects include far less private sector engagement in education than do country-designed ESPs. The report also gives a brief account of GRA grants and the single GRA project that engages the private sector.

Summary reflections on private sector engagement in GPE recipient countries note trends and areas for further investigation including issues concerning the ambiguous descriptions of private schools within the documents; the range of rationales provided for support to private schools; tax/fiscal incentives for private engagement; PPPs in early childhood education; private participation in policy-making; the role of the private sector as an education funder; and the widely agreed-upon need for regulation of private schools.

The analysis concludes that while a notable presence and expansion of private participation in GPE recipient countries is clear, this engagement cannot be attributed directly to GPE. In fact, the discrepancy between private school support in ESPs and ESPIGs reflects a GPE prioritization of public education. Yet some significant tensions emerge between GPE’s commitment to the right to education and particular forms of private participation as identified in the project documents and ESPs.

The Global Partnership for Education treads a fine line relating to private engagement in education, navigating its dual mandate to both support education as a human right and a public good, while simultaneously promoting country ownership and nationally identified priorities. And so while GPE is in a position to maintain its course in predominantly supporting public education, this current stance may come in tension with the goals of recipient governments and other stakeholders within countries.

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