Learning Lessons from Litigators: Module 4-International Human Rights Law
First Day at School in Gaza school
Gaza, 2, September, 2012. Thousands of refugees' children headed for UNRWA schools today September, 2 2012, on their first day of the school year in Gaza Strip despite the harsh economic conditions people in Gaza Strip are suffering from.
People of Gaza Strip suffer harsh economic conditions due to the Israeli blockade enforced over six years ago which affected all life aspects including education.
Parents had three occasions that cost high expenses starting with Ramadan, Eid Al Fitr and last but not least the new school year since students require with the beginning of every school year a new uniform, shoes, school bag to say the least in addition to stationary.
However, some refugee families can't afford all this, so some students are forced to wear previous year uniforms which might be worn out.
Nonetheless, faces were radiant with smiles, UNRWA students happy to rejoin their friends and celebrate their first day at school. Teachers welcomed their students in a festive atmosphere to ease the pressure, and in an attempt to integrate them to their schools from the first day to start the concentration process and look to the future with hope.
All parents of UNRWA schools students agree that their children's education is vital and incontrovertible. This comes from their belief that education is the only path to liberate oneself from reality's sufferings in Gaza Strip and that it is the only path to achieve and realize desired goals.
With the beginning of the new school year, teachers and students both hope for the continuity of the school feeding program and stationary that UNRWA has been implementing for three years because of its positive effects on academic achievement. The program alleviates the intensity of the financial crisis that ravages refugee families in Gaza by providing students with money for breakfast and stationary.
The school year has begun and with it voices that demands construction of new schools to
Strategic litigation has predominantly focused on domestic legal processes. By ratifying treaties and conventions that protect the right to education, many states have agreed to be held accountable on the international plane. The UN Special Rapporteurs and treaty bodies such as the Committee on the Convention of the Rights of the Child and the even the European Court of Human Rights have been champions in holding the state to account for the right to education.
Despite this, international human rights law is an often overlooked in discussions on strategic litigation. But it could be an exciting additional tool in a strategy to achieve high-quality education for all. International human rights law can play a crucial role in setting normative standards. There is a current movement spearhead by CSOs to create Guiding Principles on the Obligations of States Regarding Private Schools.
This final module talks to CSOs from Uganda and UK who work at the nexus of national and international to critically understand the role that international law can play in strategic litigation on the right to education.
**You can watch Module 1, Module 2 and Module 3 here**