Gearing up towards the Global Action Week for Education - the global flagship event for the education civil society movement

The Global Action Week for Education in 2019 takes place between the April 24th to May 1st under the overarching theme: Making the right to an inclusive, equitable, quality, free public education a reality. The aim of this year's Global Action Week for Education is to highlight education as an enabling human right that we all have the right to claim and enjoy, and to put pressure on governments and international bodies to take appropriate measures, including financial ones, to fulfil this right.

The proposed slogan: My Education, My right(s) is framed within the overall SDG4 targets and focusing on claiming the right to education. It encompasses several of GCE's strategic focus areas. It relates closely to ‘Equality and non-discrimination’ and also has linkages with 'Education in emergencies' as GCE undertakes policy strategies to promote the right to education for people who in the context of conflicts and climate change-related emergencies struggle to enjoy their right to education. It also articulates with Transformative education and with SDG4 target 4.7. Education should not be limited to the acquisition of basic literacy and numeracy skills, but should also focus on preparing citizens to be active and assertive holders of their rights and play an active role in shaping the present and future of societies.

We are at a critical point that demands stronger commitments of all partners to ensure the timely delivery of free quality education for all as set out in the Education 2030 agenda: children starting school in 2019 will complete their 12 years basic education by 2030. It is an ideal moment to interrogate stakeholders on their commitment, and to assess if the fundamental human right to free inclusive quality public education for all will became a reality.

This year, the Global Action Week for Education calls on governments to

  • Subscribe to, ratify and implement the human rights treaties and optional protocols
  • Commit to the full realisation and implementation of SDG4
  • Invest in public education systems, according to international standards (at least 6% GNP, 20% public budget) and ensure that 3-5% is used for accommodations for students with disabilities.
  • Raise the attractiveness of the teaching profession, ensuring that teachers have decent employment and working conditions, enjoy their full trade union rights (especially freedom of association and collective bargaining) and are well supported with quality initial and continuous professional training.
  • Develop gender sensitive education sector plans, including a participatory monitoring and evaluation with civil society organisations.
  • Provide a framework, allocated resources and planning for delivering education in context of emergencies, and to IDPS and migrants.
  • Address exclusion and discrimination in curriculum, teaching and learning materials and school governance
  • Foster children and youth participation as a key strategy for the education public policies
  • Provide progressively free of charge public quality tertiary education, including university education.
  • Foster the proper CSO monitoring mechanisms for increasing efficiency in spending of education budget and its proper utilisation.
  • Ratify ILO Convention 138 on the Minimum Age for Employment, which stipulates that the permissible age of entry into employment "shall not be less than the age of completion of compulsory schooling and, in any case, shall not be less than 15 years.
  • Provide a second chance to out-of-school children and child labourers, by implementing accelerated learning courses to mainstream them to their age-appropriate classes in the public education system.