06.12.2017 - Geneva Office

A Step Forward in the Right to Education

©UNESCO/Zhaocan Li

In commemoration of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a book launch and panel discussion on the right to education was organized in the Palais des Nations in Geneva on 4 December 2017. The Permanent Missions of Portugal and Finland supported this event.

Published by OIDEL, a non-governmental organization, the book entitled Code of International Education Law 2017 is a compilation of international standards that contains the provisions which appear in the right to education norms taken from the international instruments adopted by the United Nations, UNESCO and ILO. As such, this study represents a comprehensive set of legal references of the essential content on the right to education.

The panel was composed of experts and specialists on education; Ms. Rolla Moumné from the Education Sector of UNESCO was among the panelists. In her intervention, Ms. Moumné stressed the importance of the new book and its implications to Member States, the academia and civil society organizations around the world.

“This compilation as well as the document ‘Essential Content’, comes at a strategic moment, at a time when the international community is engaged in the implementation of the new Education 2030 Agenda with the help of UNESCO,” said Ms. Moumné.

Ms. Moumné underscored that the right to education is an integral part to human rights; therefore, it is a universal right indivisible to everyone. As a reminder of legal obligations to Member States, the new book is expected to help bolster the existing framework on the right to education and foster accountability.

“I hope that this publication will encourage all stakeholders to contribute to the right to education, as well as its enforcement by Member States,” said Ms. Moumné.

Mr. Georges Haddad, President of University Paris 1 - Panthéon Sorbonne, and former Director at UNESCO, took on the matter from a philosophical and moral perspective. He said that education was indispensable insofar as it was a process for individuals to undertake to discover who they are and why they are, during which they must also learn to distinguish valid knowledge from invalid information.

The panel discussion also brought up, inter alia, several challenges faced by the international community regarding the right to education. The right to education for children of migrants and refugees, as well as their integration into educational systems were among the topics discussed.

For more information on UNESCO’s role on the right to education, please visit:


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