This indicator refers to targeted attacks on students, teachers, and other educational personnel carried out by conflict actors. It includes injuries, torture, abduction, forced disappearance, sexual violence, child soldier recruitment, killings, and threats of violence (such as coercion or extortion), that occur in educational facilities, or when students, teachers, and other educational personnel are at, or on their way to or from school, university or other educational facilities. Attacks on students and teachers also include reported incidents of placing students and teachers in harm’s way by exposing them to return fire, including in the way to and from school - as for example when a school bus is caught in cross fire.
Levels of disaggregation: for each incident, identify (disaggregate by age group and gender):
Virtual library of the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Children and Armed Conflict, OCHA’s Humanitarian Data Exchange’s Education and Conflict Monitor, the reports of the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA), and GCPEA and Insecurity Insight’s Education in Danger newsbrief.
Article 1 (A), Article 2 (1), Article 13 (1,4), International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; Article 29 (2), Convention on the Rights of the Child; Article 2, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict; Articles 4, 13, 32, 50 & 94, Geneva Convention IV; Article 48, 49, 50, 51, 57, 58, 77 & 78, Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions; Art 4 (2, 3° Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions; International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance; Article 2 (2) Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment; Article 1 (A), Article 2 (1), International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; Article 7, (g) (i) & article 8 (2) (b) (ix), Rome Statute;; Article 13 (5), Protocol of San Salvador; Article 11 (7), African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child; Article 14 (3), European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights; Article 27 (3) ILO Convention 169; Article 18, Council of Europe Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse. UN Security Council resolutions: 1261 (1999), 1314 (2000), 1379 (2001), 1460 (2003), 1539 (2004), 1612 (2005), 1820 (2008), 1882 (2009), 1998 (2011), 2068 (2012), 2143 (2014), 2225 (2015), 2427 (2018).
Document specially, for each incident, the date, place and time of the attack (specify if it is ongoing); who is allegedly responsible for the attack (perpetrator); the nature of the attack (describe how the attack took place, what the consequences of it were, and any other relevant information). It is important to desegregate each incident by gender, age group religion and level of education, as it may reveal if some people/groups are being particularly targeted. The sensitivity of the political context may sometimes result in military surveillance and create mistrust within the community.
Be aware that civilians might be intimidated and/or threatened by armed parties and face particular risks if they collaborate in monitoring. Make sure your sources are aware of the risks and are willing to cooperate despite this. Check ethical and child safeguarding guidelines in our monitoring guide: Monitoring Education Under Attack from a Human Rights’ Perspective.
After desegregation, search for patterns of attack.
These attacks are distinct from attacks on schools, in that they target people rather than infrastructure.
When students, teachers or school staff are threatened or attacked there are short and long term consequences on the right to education. For example, students who are injured may be prevented from going to school for a certain period of time, may suffer from physical and psychological injuries affecting their capacity to concentrate and their learning skills. The consequences of attacks perpetrated against teachers and educational personnel affect the access to and quality of education.
Students and educational personnel may be denied access to classrooms because of checkpoints and roadblocks. A general climate of insecurity and fear as a result of conflict can also prevent students and teachers from attending school, increasing drop-out rate and teacher absenteeism rate.
Some armed groups are opposed to secular and girls’ education, leading to girls and women being abducted and sometimes forced into marriage or into having sexual relations with their perpetrator. Disaggregated data can help identify if minority, ethnic groups, religious groups or girls and women are being specifically targeted, for example.
Students, teachers and staff of all levels of education - including, pre-school, kindergarten, vocational training and higher education - are affected by these types of attack.
The indicator may be applied at a regional, national or subnational level.