The second edition of the Global Education Monitoring Report (GEM Report) presents the latest evidence on global progress towards the education targets of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

With hundreds of millions of people still not going to school, and many not achieving minimum skills at school, it is clear education systems are off track to achieve global goals. The marginalised currently bear the most consequences but also stand to benefit the most if policy-makers pay sufficient attention to their needs. Faced with these challenges, along with tight budgets and increased emphasis on results-oriented value for money, countries are searching for solutions. Increased accountability often tops the list.

The 2017/8 GEM Report shows the entire array of approaches to accountability in education. It ranges from countries unused to the concept, where violations of the right to education go unchallenged, to countries where accountability has become an end in itself instead of a means to inclusive, equitable and high-quality education and lifelong learning for all.

The report emphasises that education is a shared responsibility. While governments have primary responsibility, all actors – schools, teachers, parents, students, international organizations, private sector providers, civil society and the media – have a role in improving education systems. The report emphasises the importance of transparency and availability of information but urges caution in how data are used. It makes the case for avoiding accountability systems with a disproportionate focus on narrowly defined results and punitive sanctions. In an era of multiple accountability tools, the report provides clear evidence on those that are working and those that are not.

The COVID-19 pandemic and the responses of States thereto have had a very significant impact on the enjoyment of a wide range of social rights. The Council of Europe’s European Social Charter provides a framework for the measures that must be taken by States Parties to cope with the pandemic as it unfolds. The treaty also provides a necessary framework for the post-pandemic social and economic recovery as well as for preparation for and responses to possible future crises of this nature.

With the present statement the European Committee of Social Rights (ECSR) aims to highlight those Charter rights that are particularly engaged by the COVID-19 crisis. (It does not address the right to protection of health under Article 11 of the Charter, which was the subject of a separate statement adopted in April 20201 ). The statement provides guidance to States Parties, organisations of workers and employers, civil society and other key stakeholders by clarifying certain aspects of the Charter rights in question as they apply in the current crisis. 

Dans le présent rapport soumis en application des résolutions 8/4 et 44/3 du Conseil des droits de l’homme, la Rapporteuse spéciale sur le droit à l’éducation examine les dimensions culturelles du droit à l’éducation, éléments cruciaux de la réalisation du droit universel à une éducation inclusive et de qualité, telle que la préconise l’objectif de développement durable no 4. Dans son analyse, la Rapporteuse spéciale identifie, en prenant appui sur les nombreuses expériences nationales, des éléments propices au respect de la diversité et des droits culturels de chacun dans l’éducation: a) Valorisation des ressources culturelles présentes ; b) Participation à la vie éducationnelle de tous les acteurs pertinents, y compris les apprenants dans toute leur diversité ; c) Décentralisation en faveur des acteurs locaux et mise en place d’une certaine autonomie des écoles pour assurer la pertinence culturelle des apprentissages ; d) Méthodes d’observation participatives et systémiques ; e) Respect des libertés dans le champ éducationnel, notamment. La Rapporteuse spéciale invite à considérer le droit à l’éducation comme un droit culturel en tant que tel, c’est-à-dire comme le droit de chacun d’accéder aux ressources culturelles nécessaires pour développer librement son processus d’identification, vivre des relations dignes de reconnaissance mutuelle tout au long de son existence et affronter les défis cruciaux auxquels notre monde doit faire face, de s’adonner aux pratiques qui permettent de s’approprier ces ressources et d’y contribuer.

L’originalité de cette approche consiste à considérer la vie éducationnelle comme une relation vivante entre des acteurs (élèves, éducateurs, organisations et autres acteurs associés) et des ensembles de connaissances qui forment des ressources culturelles communes, porteuses « d’identité, de valeurs et de sens », sans lesquelles les acteurs ne peuvent rien. 

 

In the present report, submitted pursuant to Human Rights Council resolutions 8/4 and 44/3, the Special Rapporteur on the right to education considers the cultural dimensions of the right to education, which are crucial to ensuring that the universal right to inclusive and quality education is realized, as called for in Sustainable Development Goal 4. The Special Rapporteur calls for the right to education to be viewed as a cultural right – that is, as the right of each person to the cultural resources necessary to freely follow a process of identification, to experience mutually rewarding relations his or her life long, to deal with the crucial challenges facing our world and to engage in the practices that make it possible to take ownership of and contribute to these resources.

What is unique about this approach is its conception of educational life as a living relationship between actors (students, educators, organizations and other associated actors) and collections of knowledge that form shared cultural resources, vectors of identity, values and meaning, without which action is impossible.

En este informe, presentado en cumplimiento de las resoluciones 8/4 y 44/3 del Consejo de Derechos Humanos, la Relatora Especial sobre el derecho a la educación examina las dimensiones culturales del derecho a la educación, que son cruciales para lograr la plena efectividad del derecho universal a una educación inclusiva y de calidad, como preconiza el Objetivo de Desarrollo Sostenible 4. En su análisis, la Relatora Especial señala, a partir de numerosas experiencias nacionales, elementos que favorecen el respeto de la diversidad y los derechos culturales de todos en la educación, a saber: a) La valoración de los recursos culturales presentes; c) La descentralización en favor de los actores locales y la dotación de cierta autonomía a las escuelas para garantizar la pertinencia cultural del aprendizaje; d) Los métodos de observación participativa y sistémica; e) El respeto de las libertades en el ámbito de la educación, en particular. La Relatora Especial hace un llamamiento para que el derecho a la educación se considere un derecho cultural en sí mismo, es decir, como el derecho de toda persona a tener acceso a los recursos culturales necesarios para desarrollar libremente su propio proceso de definición de la identidad, tener relaciones dignas de reconocimiento mutuo a lo largo de su vida y afrontar los desafíos cruciales a los que se enfrenta nuestro mundo, así como para participar en las prácticas que le permitan apropiarse de estos recursos y contribuir a ellos.

La originalidad de este enfoque radica en considerar la vida educativa como una relación viva entre los actores (alumnos, educadores, organizaciones y otros actores asociados) y el conjunto de conocimientos que forman los recursos culturales comunes, portadores “de identidad, de valores y sentido”, sin los cuales los actores no pueden hacer nada.