In 2017 our School Council learnt about UNICEF. They looked at the charities key objectives and wanted to learn more. They found out about the Rights Respecting Schools Award, an initiative run by UNICEF that teaches children about their rights and how we can improve our community by working together to protect these rights. School Council and Mrs Keenan worked hard to progress to our Bronze Award – Rights Committed in late 2017. We introduced out PRIDE Champions in September 2018 who carried on the work across the school and in June 2019 we achieved the Silver Award – Right Aware. We will continue to develop this work towards achieving the Gold Award.
What does it mean to be a Rights Respecting School?
A Rights Respecting School, is a school that embeds the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC or CRC) in their practices to improve well-being and help all children to realise their potential.
What is the UNCRC?
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, or UNCRC, is the basis of all of Unicef’s work. It is the most complete statement of children’s rights ever produced and is the most widely-ratified international human rights treaty in history.
The Convention has 54 articles (see below) that cover all aspects of a child’s life and set out the civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights that all children everywhere are entitled to. It also explains how adults and governments must work together to make sure all children can enjoy all their rights.
In 1989, governments worldwide promised all children the same rights by adopting the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, also known as the CRC or UNCRC. The Convention changed the way children are viewed and treated – in other words, as human beings with a distinct set of rights instead of as passive objects of care and charity.
These rights describe what a child needs to survive, grow, and live up to their potential in the world. They apply equally to every child, no matter who they are or where they come from.
What do we need to do to become a Rights Respecting School?
To become a Rights Respecting School, Cedars Academy has started the Rights Respecting School Award. The Rights Respecting Schools Award focuses on children’s rights in schools and takes a whole-school approach to children’s rights and human rights education. Child Rights Education (CRE) can be defined as learning about rights, learning through rights and learning for rights within an overall context of education as a right. It aims to build the capacity of children as rights-holders to claim their rights, and the capacity of adults as duty-bearers to fulfil their obligations. Child rights education helps adults and children to work together, providing the space and encouragement for the meaningful participation and sustained civic engagement of children.
How can I find out more?
If you would like to find out more about our journey to becoming a Rights Respecting School or have some ideas you would like to share, pleases speak to Mrs Keenan or another member of the steering group.UN Rights of the Child