As many governments strive to expand basic education, they alsoface the challenge of ensuring that students stay in school long enough to acquire the knowledge they need to cope in a rapidly changing world.Assessments show that this is not happening in many countries. This Report reviews research evidence on the multiple factors that determine quality, and maps out key policies for improving the teaching and learning process, especially in low-income countries.

The  report examines Senegal’s mixed record in addressing the problem in the year since a fire ripped through a Quranic boarding school in Dakar housed in a makeshift shack, killing eight boys. After the fire, President Macky Sall pledged to take immediate action to close schools where boys live in unsafe conditions or are exploited by teachers, who force them to beg and inflict severe punishment when the boys fail to return a set quota of money. While important legislation has advanced, authorities have taken little concrete action to end this abuse. The report informs about the regulation of Quranic school and makes recommendations.

 

This report examines national and international norms and standards, as well as policies regarding quality in education. The Special Rapporteur underscores the need to promote the adoption of norms at the national level establishing the right to quality education, consistent with the international legal human rights framework and relevant initiatives at the national, regional and international levels. In conclusion, the Special Rapporteur provides recommendations aimed at promoting quality education.

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The  report centres on the assessment of the educational attainments of students and the implementation of the right to education. The Special Rapporteur on the right to education underlines the importance of developing and applying national assessment systems which are in compliance with international human right norms, so that education meets the essential objectives assigned to it in human rights conventions. He considers that such a human rights-based, holistic approach is essential for fostering the humanistic mission of education rather than its mere instrumental role, using a narrow scope of assessments linked to mathematical literacy and language skills only. The report also places emphasis on skills development as an integral part of basic education and on the need for innovative assessment modalities of technical and vocational education and training, particularly in developing countries, in response to the rising aspirations of youth, while not losing sight of the human rights perspective.

The report concludes with recommendations to strengthen human rights-based, holistic approaches to national assessments of the educational attainments of students.

El presente informe se ha preparado de conformidad con las resoluciones 8/4 y 17/3 del Consejo de Derechos Humanos y con el informe inicial del Relator Especial (A/HRC/17/29 y Corr.1) en el que el Relator Especial consideró que el establecimiento de normas y principios para una educación de calidad era uno de los temas que debía ser examinado durante su mandato. En el presente informe se examinan las normas y principios nacionales e internacionales, así como las políticas relativas a la calidad en la educación. El Relator Especial destaca la necesidad de promover la adopción de normas en el plano nacional en que se establezca el derecho a una educación de calidad, congruentes con el marco jurídico internacional de los derechos humanos y las iniciativas pertinentes adoptadas en los planos nacional, regional e internacional. El Relator Especial concluye haciendo recomendaciones encaminadas a promover la educación de calidad.

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This publication is a compilation of practical examples of measures taken by Member States in implementing the provisions of the Convention and the Recommendation against Discrimination in Education. It has seven chapters reflecting the main issues and components including in the Convention and Recommendation. It begins by presenting the legal framework adopted by States. This is followed by a presentation of measures taken for eliminating discrimination in and through education; promoting equality of opportunity and treatment in this field, across all levels of education and through inclusive education; supporting affirmative action; enhancing quality education; religious and moral education; and the rights of minorities and language of instruction.

The Special Rapporteur examines the right to education in the digital age and, specifically, how to uphold the norms and principles that underlie the right to education while embracing digital technologies, which are revolutionising teaching and learning processes and transforming the landscape of higher education. He considers issues related to marginalisation and exclusion, as well as the quality of education, especially human values in education. Concerns are expressed about the digital divide and about how it affects fundamental principles, such as equality of opportunity. The Special Rapporteur sets out policy and legal responses to address these issues and challenges, bearing in mind the normative framework of the right to education as established in international human rights treaties. He also highlights the repercussions of digital technologies on public investment in education and on the quality of education, especially in respect of preserving human values in education, and underlines the need to safeguard education as a public good. Finally, he offers a set of recommendations for ensuring that the implementation of digital technology in education is in keeping with State obligations on the right to education as laid down in international human rights conventions.

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Violence in schools and other educational settings is a worldwide problem. Students who are perceived not to conform to prevailing sexual and gender norms, including those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), are more vulnerable. Violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression, also referred to as homophobic and transphobic violence, is a form of school-related gender-based violence. It includes physical, sexual and psychological violence and bullying and, like other forms of school-related violence, can occur in classes, playgrounds, toilets and changing rooms, on the way to and from school and online. This report presents the findings of a global review, commissioned by UNESCO, of homophobic and transphobic violence in schools and education sector responses.

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.

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