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Segregation deprives children of quality education
©UCL Institute of Education

Segregation deprives children of quality education

12/09/17Education

The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks, has announced that segregation within schools remains a factor which deprives children from receiving quality education.

“The right to education is a fundamental human right. Yet, many European countries still deny thousands of children, including children with disabilities, Roma children and refugee or migrant children, equal access to it by keeping them in segregated schools.

“This is a violation of children’s human rights with far-reaching negative consequences for our societies. Member states have an obligation to secure the right of every child to quality education without discrimination,” Muižnieks said in a paper on addressing school segregation through inclusive education, released today (12 September).

The paper provides an overview of school segregation in member states of the Council of Europe, including the main causes for such. It subsequently reviews the risks which separate education entails and outlines the key principles which underpin policies to eradicate segregation and promote inclusive education.

Moreover, the report outlines 12 recommendations to develop more inclusive education policies, specifically through improved anti-discrimination legislation, school desegregation strategies and better regulation of school admissions.

The commissioner added: “School segregation harms children’s learning opportunities and is a clear injustice against minority and other vulnerable groups of people, which also perpetuates their marginalisation.

“States should adopt a combination of strong anti-discrimination measures and policies that promote more inclusive education systems where all children learn together. This is not a utopian project, but an achievable goal that can ensure more equal treatment of all children and, in the long term, improve social cohesion.”

Pan European Networks Ltd