12 December 2022

International Human Rights Day is a moment to celebrate progress in the protection and promotion of human rights in the year that has been, and to look to the coming year and the opportunities and challenges it poses. 

The Right to Education Initiative stands for the full recognition of education as a human right, essential for the wellbeing and development of every individual, regardless of their status and circumstance over their life course. This commitment is underpinned by the principles of universality, indivisibility and interdependence. 

The right to education is a fundamental right which begins at birth and lasts throughout life. The realisation of the right to education is key for the realisation of other rights and for building societies where respect for human rights, tolerance, inclusivity and diversity are valued.

Throughout 2022, we have worked tirelessly to promote education as a human right. To celebrate International Human Rights Day we are looking backwards at our successes and impact in making the right to education a reality, and looking forwards to the year to come. 

Over this year, we are proud to have continued to advance the Abidjan Principles on the Right to Education, supporting their development and launch in Spanish, Portuguese and ArabicWe took great strides forward in advancing ECCE rights, catalysing action around advocacy efforts including with regards the right to one year free, pre-primary education. We worked to support research and advocacy on the right to higher education, with a particular focus on how inequalities affect access and participation in higher education. 

To celebrate Human Rights Day itself, we co-sponsored a tool and 7th event in the ‘How-to Child Rights series’, with a focus on How to Use United Nations Human Rights Resolutions to Advance Children’s Rights. We also took part in a UNESCO discussion on ‘Transforming education through human rights’, in an event which brought together youth and policy makers.

As we look forwards to 2023, we call on states, as duty bearers, to uphold and implement the right to education, for all people from birth, to adulthood and throughout life, on the basis of the principles of non-discrimination and equality.


UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

On 10 December 2023, the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights will be celebrated. Ahead of this milestone celebration, starting on this year's Human Rights Day, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has launched a year-long campaign to showcase the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, by focusing on its legacy, relevance and activism.

Watch the message of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk to mark the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights here:



Video available in the following languages here: