Violence in educational settings is a daily reality that denies millions of children and young people the fundamental human right to education. One estimate by Plan International suggests that 246 million children and adolescents experience violence in and around school every year. Girls are disproportionately affected, as are those perceived not to conform to prevailing sexual and gender norms.
Schools that are not safe or inclusive violate the right to education as enshrined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child; and contravene the Convention against Discrimination in Education, which aims to eliminate discrimination and promote the adoption of measures that ensure equality of opportunity and treatment.
Ensuring all children and young people have access to safe, inclusive, health-promoting learning environments is a strategic priority for UNESCO. Key outcomes for UNESCO’s work in this area are:
- Eliminating school violence and bullying including school-related gender-based violence; and
- Preventing health- and gender-related discrimination towards learners and educators.