Reaffirming the right to education

AyerUN-Human-Rights-Council-743x418 el Consejo de Derechos Humanos reafirmó su compromiso con el derecho a la educación con la aprobación por consenso de la resolución. La resolución celebró el último Informe del relator especial donde se explican los riesgos a los que se enfrenta el derecho a la educación como bien público cuando se convierte en un bien comercial. OIDEL participó en las negociaciones con el objetivo que se reconozca el papel de la sociedad civil para el disfrute del derecho a la educación

Yesterday, Thursday 2 July, the Human Rights Council reaffirmed the fundamental right to education in a resolution its 47 members adopted by consensus during its 29th session. The text particularly echoed the latest report of the Special Rapporteur on Education by emphasising the risk the enjoyment of this right is exposed to by the commercialisation of education.

Draft resolution A/HRC/29/L.14/Rev.1 was introduced to the Council by Portugal, the traditional main submitter of resolutions on the right to education. In previous weeks, the text had been discussed and amended during informal consultations in which OIDEL actively participated, suggesting two amendments to stress the visibility of civil society’s role in realising the universal right to education.

In his presentation of the draft resolution, Portuguese Ambassador Pedro Nuno Bártolo mentioned that the text made specific efforts to implement the recommendations included in the Special Rapporteur on Education’s latest report. He further highlighted three main ideas the text revolves around. Firstly, it urges states to respect their international obligations and take the necessary measures to ensure the full respect and enjoyment of the right to education as enshrined in international human rights treaties. Secondly, it calls upon all states and stakeholders, including civil society, to increase efforts to attain global education, notably by including it at the centre of the post-2015 development agenda. Finally, it deplores the aggravation of attacks, especially gender-based violence, on students, teachers and educational institutions, calling upon states to strengthen protection of educational environments.

One point only raised controversy in the proposed text. Indeed, Pakistan and China jointly submitted an amendment requesting that the mention of the Oslo Conference on Safe Schools be deleted from the perambulatory paragraphs of the resolution. They argued that the language used in Conference’s conclusions was the result of unilateral, non-state initiative that the UN should not endorse. The amendment received support from nine members of the Council. It was however rejected by a majority of twenty-two members, while sixteen others abstained. The separate vote on the concerned passage of the resolution that followed further upheld the reference by thirty votes in favour, none against and seventeen abstentions.

The resolution was finally adopted by consensus by the Human Rights Council.

Chiara Giovannozzi and Jack Wattiaux


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