In this decision, the Supreme Court of India upheld the constitutionality of section 12 of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act (RTE Act), which requires all schools, both state-funded and private, to accept 25% intake of children from disadvantaged groups. However, the Court held that the RTE Act could not require private, minority schools to satisfy a 25% quota, as this would constitute a violation of the right of minority groups to establish private schools under the Indian Constitution. This case affirms that the authority of the State to fulfil its obligations under the right to education can be extended to private, non-State actors. Because the State has the authority to determine the manner in which it discharge this obligation, it can elect to impose statutory obligations on private schools so long as the requirements are in the public interest.

On 12 June 2014, during the June Session of the Human Rights Council, the Portuguese Mission, together with Privatisation in Education Research Initiative (PERI) and the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (GI-ESCR), convened a side-event on privatisation and its impact on the right to education at Palais des Nations in Geneva. In this podcast, Anjela Taneja, from the Global Campaign for Education, shares the Indian case.

The UNESCO Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP-UNESCO) has just published six case studies from Asia and the Pacific to inspire and inform open school data policies in and beyond the region, and to empower citizens to fight corruption in education.

The case studies look at a range of school report card initiatives (both government-led and citizen-led) to create a new evidence base for more informed policy-making on how to use school-related data to create a more transparent and accountable education system.

They look at who publishes school data, what type of data is published, and the level of accessibility and use by various stakeholders. Each case study also draws from a survey of some 250 school-level actors to understand how users of school data currently interact with various school report card initiatives. The case studies conclude with a number of recommendations for more effective school report card design and implementation.

 

L'enseignement public est souvent critique comme étant inefficace et inefficient. Cependant, lorsque des lacunes dans l'enseignement public sont identifiées, elles peuvent souvent être attribuées non pas à un manque de compétence, mais a un manque de volonté politique. En examinant sept exemples d'enseignement public dans les pays en développement, cette recherche montre que, contrairement aux idées reçues, l'enseignement public peut être l'approche la plus efficace, efficiente et transformatrice de l'éducation et, surtout, qu'il est possible de développer un enseignement public de qualité partout, y compris dans les pays du Sud.

 

ESPAÑOL   ENGLISH

La educación pública a menudo es criticada por ser ineficaz e ineficiente. Sin embargo, cuando se identifican las deficiencias en la educación pública, muy frecuentemente ellas no pueden ser atribuidas a la falta de capacidad, sino a la falta de voluntad política. Al revisar siete ejemplos de educación pública en países en desarrollo, esta investigación muestra que, en contraste directo con ideas ampliamente difundidas, la educación publica puede ser un abordaje mas eficaz, eficiente y transformador de la educación y - lo mas importante -, que es posible desarrollar una educación pública de calidad en todas partes del mundo.

ENGLISH   FRANÇAIS

Public education is often critiqued as ineffective and inefficient. However, where shortcomings in public education are identified, they can often be attributed not to lack of capacity, but lack of political will. Reviewing seven examples of public education in developing countries, this research shows that, in direct contrast to widely disseminated ideas, public education can be the most effective, efficient, and transformative approach to education, and, crucially, it is possible to develop quality public education everywhere.

ESPAÑOL   FRANÇAIS

Around the world, higher education communities are overwhelmed by frequent attacks on scholars, students, staff, and their institutions. State and non-state actors, including armed militant and extremist groups, police and military forces, government authorities, off-campus groups, and even members of higher education communities, among others, carry out these attacks, which often result in deaths, injuries, and deprivations of liberty. Beyond their harm to the individuals and institutions directly targeted, these attacks undermine entire higher education systems, by impairing the quality of teaching, research, and discourse on campus and constricting society’s space to think, question, and share ideas. Ultimately, they impact all of us, by damaging higher education’s unique capacity to drive the social, political, cultural, and economic development from which we all benefit.

Through its Academic Freedom Monitoring Project, Scholars at Risk (SAR) responds to these attacks by identifying and tracking key incidents, with the aim of protecting vulnerable individuals, raising awareness, encouraging accountability, and promoting dialogue and understanding that can help prevent future threats. Since 2015, SAR has been publishing Free to Think, a series of annual reports analyzing attacks on higher education communities around the world.

Free to Think 2021 documents 332 attacks on higher education communities in 65 countries and territories. This year was marked by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which has claimed more than five million lives. For higher education, the pandemic continued to disrupt academic activity, keeping many institutions in remote states of operation and suspending most academic travel. For scholars and students, the pandemic also continued to raise questions, concerns, and criticisms about state responses to public health crises, government accountability, and societal inequities. Scholars and students took on these issues in the classroom and more public venues, in-person and online, asserting their academic freedom and their rights to freedoms of expression and assembly. They also responded to acute and more long-standing political conflicts, from Myanmar’s coup to the steady erosion of human rights in Turkey, demanding civilian led government and the protection of fundamental freedoms. Frequently, however, individuals and groups opposed to their questions and ideas sought to silence them.

Key resource

In her 2022 Report on the impact of the digitalisation of education on the right to education, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to education clarified that any introduction of digital technologies in education must be framed around the right of every person to public, free, quality education and the commitments of states in this regard both under international human rights law and Sustainable Development Goal 4. This paper affirms that state obligations under the human rights framework must be the starting point for assessing and responding to discussions related to the monitoring of children’s activities and the collection and use of their data in the field of education. Part 2 outlines the international and regional human rights legal framework that governs the relationship between technology and education, providing a baseline upon which states can verify compliance with international human rights law and useful guidance for anyone seeking to understand the impacts of existing and emerging educational products and services. Part 3 then provides a comparative analysis of the regulation of technology and education in ten countries, through an examination of current data protection, education and related legislation, for the purpose of understanding how different countries are paying attention to and addressing key human rights issues with regards to technology in education in practice.

 

Background paper to 2023 UNESCO GEM Report 'Technology in education: a tool on whose terms?'

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