Support and Cooperation

The main concern in monitoring the implementation of UNESCO’s standard-setting instruments in regard to the right to education is to ensure that obligations undertaken by Member States are incorporated into national legal systems. The core responsibility devolves upon Governments as was underlined at the first meeting of the High-Level Group on Education for All (UNESCO, October 2001) – “drawing up education legislation and priorities in line with the Human rights Conventions and the EFA goals”.

Legal foundations in national systems

The right to education can only be availed by its beneficiaries when State obligations are incorporated into the national legal system and their implementation is ensured effectively. Therefore, it is crucial that the right to education in all its dimensions is incorporated into the constitutions and legislation of all Member States.
UNESCO has begun analysing constitutional provisions and national legislation relating to the right to education in various countries and providing technical assistance to Member States in developing/modernizing national legislation.

Enforcement and justiciability of the right to education

The full realisation of the right to education is dependant upon depends on the effective enforcement of States obligations. When the right to education is violated citizens must have legal recourse before the law courts or administrative tribunals. The judiciary has an essential role in upholding the right to education as an entitlement. Where they exist, national human rights institutions as well as Ombudsmen also have a role to play.

UNESCO and its Committee on Conventions and Recommendations of the Executive Board works conjointly and actively with the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) to address questions related to institutional mechanisms, judicial and quasi-judicial systems for enforcing the right to education. The Joint Expert Group UNESCO (CR)/ECOSOC (CESCR) on the monitoring of the right to education has underlined the priority concern of the justiciability of the right to education and recommended research and studies on case law and available jurisprudence. 

Related Links

The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights G1 

The UNESCO [SMG1] Committee on Conventions and Recommendations of the Executive Board

Back to top