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Konrad Glogowski

Children need a place to learn - YouTube - 0 views

    UNICEF correspondent Chris Niles reports on efforts to ensure that Syrian children can continue their education amidst conflict.
Teachers Without Borders

One in five children is bullied online - Telegraph - 0 views

    One in five children aged eight to 11 is a victim of cyberbullying attacks, a new report from charity Beatbullying has found.
Teachers Without Borders

Disaster-resilient school communities urged - - 0 views

    Considering the vulnerability of children and the role schools can play in case of any natural or human induced disaster, the speakers of a seminar have stressed for creating disaster-resilient school communities that are better trained and equipped for dealing with any such emergency situation.
    They demanded the government to declare May 16 as National School Safety Day and define standard operating procedures (SOPs) for schools which could be followed in case of any disaster. They said that these SOPs should be mounted on school walls and children and teachers be trained to strictly follow them.
Teachers Without Borders

Thailand takes first steps on long road to inclusive mainstream education | Global deve... - 0 views

  • Cultural barriers continue to deny disabled children access to schools, but progress on inclusive education is finally gathering
  • The strict hierarchy of Thai society means the drive for inclusive education needs strong commitment from both politicians and school leaders. In the past decade, there has been significant political progress in moves to implement a system that ensures children with disabilities have access to mainstream schools. However, with cultural barriers and resistance from some headteachers, the journey towards fully inclusive education has only just begun.
  • Some headteachers Lennon spoke to were amenable to the concept of inclusive education, but didn't feel they had the resources or training to implement it effectively. Others, with decades of experience of working in special schools, felt this institutional model was more suitable.
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  • However, many headteachers in Vorapanya's study cited the Buddhist belief in the need for compassion as a reason they support inclusive education. Meanprasat private school in Bangkok, which combines western-style "child-centric" learning with a Buddhist ethos of moral ethics and regular meditation, is recognised as a national leader in integrated educational practices. In total, 130 of its 1,300 students are disabled. The school's philosophy is that children with disabilities "should have the chance to mix with society and be accepted by it". More than 5,000 teachers visit the school annually and attend workshops held to help spread good practice.
  • Nanthaporn (Nuey) Nanthamongkol, a six-year-old girl with Down's syndrome, was due to be sent to a distant boarding school before he intervened. "Without our work, Nuey would have been separated from her parents, sent to a school 80km away," says Lennon. "For kids with Down's syndrome, this is the worst possible thing you could do."
  • State schools, however, which have much less funding, have been described by Vorapanya as having "woefully insufficient resources" to implement inclusive education properly. Headteachers have complained that while schools can now access a minimum of 2,000 baht (approximately £41) funding for each disabled child, this is not enough to cover the required resources or training expenses. Another problem is that this funding can only be given if the child has been officially certified with a disability. Teachers have reported that some parents do not want this social stigma or are fearful that this certification will lead to discrimination.

    Despite the significant challenges, Lennon is optimistic. "We are making great strides," he says. "If we keep doing good, the results will surely follow."

Teachers Without Borders

Children severely tortured in detention centers / schools used as detention centers - 1 views

  • Syrian army and security officers have detained and tortured children with impunity during the past year, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch has documented at least 12 cases of children detained under inhumane conditions and tortured, as well as children shot while in their homes or on the street. Human Rights Watch has also documented government use of schools as detention centres, military bases or barracks, and sniper posts, as well as the arrest of children from schools.
  • “Children have not been spared the horror of Syria’s crackdown,” said Lois Whitman, children’s rights director at Human Rights Watch. “Syrian security forces have killed, arrested, and tortured children in their homes, their schools, or on the streets. In many cases, security forces have targeted children just as they have targeted adults.”
  • Some of the arrests took place in schools. “Nazih” (not her real name), a 17-year-old girl from Tal Kalakh, told Human Rights Watch that in May 2011, security forces entered her school and arrested all the boys in her class, after questioning them about the anti-regime slogans painted on the school walls.
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  • Ala’a,” a 16-year-old boy from Tal Kalakh, told Human Rights Watch that Syrian security forces detained him for eight months, starting in May 2011, after he participated in and read political poetry at demonstrations. He was released in late January 2012 after his father bribed a prison guard with 25,000 Syrian pounds (US$436). During his detention he was held in seven different detention centres, as well as the Homs Central Prison. Ala’a told Human Rights Watch that at the Military Security branch in Homs:

    When they started interrogating me, they asked me how many protests I had been to, and I said “none.” Then they took me in handcuffs to another cell and cuffed my left hand to the ceiling. They left me hanging there for about seven hours, with about one-and-a-half to two centimetres between me and the floor – I was standing on my toes. While I was hanging there, they beat me for about two hours with cables and shocked me with cattle prods. Then they threw water on the ground and poured water on me from above. They added an electric current, and I felt the shock. I felt like I was going to die. They did this three times. Then I told them, “I will confess everything, anything you want.” 

  • A number of adult detainees and security force members who had defected and who were interviewed by Human Rights Watch confirmed the presence and torture of child detainees in facilities across Syria. “Samih,” a former adult detainee held in a political security facility in Latakia, told Human Rights Watch that children were subjected to worse treatment than adults, including sexual abuse, because they were children.
  • The government has used schools as detention centres, sniper posts, and military bases or barracks. “Marwan,” from the Insha’at neighborhood in Homs, and other Homs residents told Human Rights Watch that the army attacked Bahithet Al-Badiyah school on Brazil Street on November 4, and that military security forces then turned the school into a detention centre. Local activists also told Human Rights Watch that military security turned Al-Ba’ath elementary school in Joubar, another Homs neighborhood, into a military base and detention center in late December.
  • Children also told Human Rights Watch that their schools closed in 2011 due to violence, or that it was no longer safe for them to go to school. “Mohammed,” a 10-year-old boy from Homs, said, “I went to school for only one day [this year]. The teachers just gave us the books and told us not to come back. The road to school was not safe because of snipers.”
  • “Schools across Syria are closed because it’s too dangerous for students to attend, or because the military thinks schools are better used as detention centres than educational establishments,” said Whitman. “How long will Syrian children pay the price for the violence around them?” 
Teachers Without Borders

IRIN Africa | ETHIOPIA: Drought, floods hit education | Ethiopia | Children | Education... - 0 views

    Parts of Ethiopia are still reeling from the effects of recent drought, flooding, conflict or a combination of the three, resulting in increased numbers of children dropping out of school, say officials.
Teachers Without Borders

More than a million children set to return to school in Libya - UNICEF - 0 views

    At least 1.2 million Libyan pupils are set to return to school tomorrow, almost a year after they evacuated their classrooms during the country's popular uprising against the regime of Muammar al-Qadhafi, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) reported today.
    The agency said about 27 million textbooks are being printed by Libya's education ministry and 10 million have already been distributed in anticipation of the return to school.

    But a shortage of both books and desks remain, and transport to and from school is also lacking for many children.
Teachers Without Borders

Chinese children endure 'world's most dangerous school run' - Telegraph - 0 views

  • Four times a year, 80 children from a remote village in the Pamir mountains set off on a school run that would make most parents blanch, scaling 1000ft-high cliffs and fording swollen rivers to get to class.
  • "There is only one way to get to the village, and you have to climb up in the mountains," said Su Qin, the head teacher at Taxkorgan Town boarding school, where the children study. "The village is completely cut off. The roads only take you further away," she added.
  • The most dangerous part of the route is a path, which narrows to just a few inches wide, that has been cut into a cliff face some 1,000ft above the valley beneath. Without safety harnesses, the teachers gingerly shepherd their charges along.
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  • "Actually the parents think it toughens the kids up, and gives them good experience," said Ms Su. "However, some of the parents are reluctant to let their children go to school. They are so cut off from the world they do not appreciate the importance that having knowledge will play in their children's lives."
  • Guo Yukun, the local Communist party secretary, told China Central Television (CCTV) that a road is now under construction to the village. However, because of the difficulty of the terrain, it is not expected to be finished until late 2013.
  • "Our main task is to get these 80 primary and middle schoolchildren out of Pili village [and bring them to the school] safely. Our national policy is to make sure children have a free education. So the teachers take good care of them," he said.
Teachers Without Borders

IRIN Africa | DRC: Millions miss out on basic education | DRC | Children | Education - 0 views

  • KINSHASA, 14 November 2011 (IRIN) - Access to basic education in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) remains poor, with up to seven million children across the vast country out of school - despite a 2010 government decision to make primary education free.
  • It said 25 percent of the primary school-aged children and 60 percent of adolescents were not enrolled in classes.
  • "Even with the announcement of free primary education, parents, many of whom are unemployed and have little means of sustaining themselves, are bearing most of the costs involved in educating their children because of delays in releasing the funds for free education," Ornelie Lelo, communications officer for an education NGO in the capital, SOS Kinshasa, told IRIN.
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  • Education officials have expressed concern over the severe shortage of teachers in public schools. In primary school, the national average is one teacher for 37 pupils, according to the national statistics, but in marginalized or rural areas, there can be more than 100 pupils per class.
  • "Many of the public schools in existence are in deplorable conditions; no blackboards in many of them; in some, children sit on the floor due to lack of desks, and the most worrying concern is encroachment on school land by individuals, many of whom are connected politically," Lelo said. "One can find a pharmacy, restaurant or even bar right in the middle of a school compound - it looks like all open spaces in schools are up for grabs.
  • Tshimbalanga said the average monthly salary for a primary school teacher was $35-40 and since the teachers' salaries are often several months in arrears, parents were forced to chip in.

    "Generally, teachers, like other Congolese workers, survive on very little, some even less than $1 a day, yet the cost of education is borne by parents, sometimes even up to 65 percent of the total cost," Tshimbalanga said. "In rural areas, some teachers supplement their earnings by working as casual labourers on farms; those in urban areas end up begging for money from their pupils' parents just to survive."

    To improve the quality of education, Tshimbalanga said, the government had to pay teachers properly. He said the teachers’ union entered into an agreement in 2004 with the government for teachers to be paid a minimum of $208 monthly but six years later, this has not been implemented.
Teachers Without Borders

Libyan children start school year without Gadhafi | World news | The Guardian - 0 views

  • Associated Press= TRIPOLI, Libya (AP) — Boys and girls chanted slogans against Moammar Gadhafi and teachers hanged an effigy of the fugitive leader Saturday as many Libyan children started their first school year without the "brother leader" dictating the curriculum.

    Euphoria filled the halls, but teachers admitted a lot needed to be done to overhaul an educational system where a main goal for nearly 42 years was to instill adoration of Gadhafi and what he touted as the greatest system of rule in the world — the "Jamahiriya," a utopian "rule by the masses" that in reality boiled down to rule by Gadhafi.

  • Not all facilities in Tripoli opened their doors, and school officials urged patience, saying it will take time to build a new curriculum and provide new equipment after years of strict control by Gadhafi's regime.

    "I believe the National Transitional Council will give us new books, computers and tapes," said headmistress Moofidha Nashnoush as she rushed through the halls hanging up new flags and hugging her colleagues. "We need to help the children forget the Gadhafi era and start fresh."

  • The school opening is part of attempts by the National Transitional Council, once the leadership of the rebellion and now closest thing to a government in the North African nation, to restore a sense of normalcy despite continued fighting in three southern and central areas that remain loyal to Gadhafi.
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  • Bahoula Salam Ergei, a 37-year-old teacher, recalled how her lesson plan — including teaching the Green Book and the "mind of Gadhafi" — was always dictated by orders handed down from the regime and she was afraid to change it. Others said authorities often ordered sudden, random changes that they had to follow.
Teachers Without Borders

CARE: "Going to school should not be a luxury" - 0 views

  • "Going to school should not be a luxury, especially for the children in Dadaab. On the opposite, this is a powerful way to make their lives safer," emphasizes Stephen Gwynne-Vaughan, country director for CARE Kenya. "If children are left idle in the camps, they are most vulnerable to abuse, drugs and other threats."
  • When attending classes, children do not only learn how to read and write, but also build up their self-confidence by learning about their rights, good hygiene practices and other matters related to life in the camps.

    While schools are closed during the month of August, CARE has started an accelerated learning program for newly-arrived children, many of whom have never been to school before. In the first two days of the program, 1,100 children were admitted to class and are now getting up to speed to participate in regular school programs after the break. However, once classes resume in September, the schools' capacity to provide quality primary education for the growing number of children may be an impossible task.

  • CARE currently manages five regular schools in Dagahaley camp, reaching more than 15,100 children. Adults from the refugee population are trained as teachers and receive teaching material. Many of those teachers have been living in Dadaab since their early childhood themselves and were educated in the camps before becoming educators themselves.
    DADAAB, Kenya (August 11, 2011) - As the influx of Somali refugees across the border to Kenya is increasing every day, CARE draws attention to the lack of sufficient primary education for children living in the refugee camps of Dadaab.
    The latest numbers of officially registered refugees issued by the United Nations on August 8, 2011, list 399,346 people currently living in Dadaab, a number that is expected to keep growing. Amongst the total refugee population, approximately 114,000 are children at the age of 5 to 13, and only 38 percent are currently enrolled in school.
Teachers Without Borders

Closure of migrant children schools in China sparks anguish | Reuters - 0 views

  • (Reuters) - China has shut down 24 schools for the children of migrant workers in Beijing forcing more than 14,000 students to drop out, state media said, sparking anger among parents who say they face discrimination.

    Local officials told the migrant schools that they had not met safety and hygiene standards.

  • While the overwhelming majority of China's 150 million rural migrant workers see their future in cities and towns, they are often treated as unwelcome "interlopers" and have few rights.

    China's residence permit (hukou) system, which channels most welfare, housing support and healthcare to urban residents, means that migrant workers do not have access to state-subsidized schools.

  • "Our school has closed, forcing some 800 students to drop out," said a representative of the New Hope School, who declined to be named. "There are still 500 students with nowhere to go although the local government has relocated 300 of them."
Teachers Without Borders

UNICEF - Pakistan - Pakistan flood crisis, one year on - 0 views

  • PUNJAB, Pakistan, 3 August 2011 – “Before the floods, this village had a one-room Masjid [mosque] school. Most of the children sat under a tree. We now have this beautiful school, and the children love it,” says Mukhtar Ahmad, Headmaster of the Government Primary School in Mullanwala village, located in the Muzaffargarh District of Pakistan’s Punjab Province.
  • Last year’s unprecedented floods in Pakistan forced the bulk of the population in Mullanwala to relocate to safer areas. When the floodwaters receded and people returned, they discovered that not a single structure in the village was standing – not even the one-room Masjid school.
  • Now, a year after the floods, the TLC has turned into a transitional school housed in semi-permanent buildings. As part of its initiative to quickly improve education facilities for flood-affected children in Pakistan, UNICEF plans the construction of 500 such transitional schools by December 2011. Indeed, the process is already under way.
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  • Its teachers use a ‘child-friendly’ approach to schooling that takes the needs of the whole child into account – including needs for protection, recreation, safe water and sanitation, and more.
  • “Before the floods, I used to go to a one-room school,” recalls Shahbaz. “When the floods came, we moved to high ground in Muzaffargarh. When we returned after the floods, our school had been destroyed. Then we got a tent school, books, bags and everything else. Later, they made us this school building.”
  • “Teaching without corporal punishment is something new in this environment,” she notes. “Since children don’t get beaten up in school, parents are also learning that physical punishment is detrimental to a child’s upbringing.”
Teachers Without Borders

Schools and students face uncertain future in Japan - - 0 views

  • Tokyo (CNN) -- Students in many districts across Japan brushed off their uniforms and shouldered their bookbags for the first day of the new school year on Wednesday.

    But while most were worried about meeting their new teachers or what their class schedules might be, some were facing the threat of nuclear contamination or the loss of former classmates.

  • "I just got a letter from my mom," he said. "It says that she is hurting because we're separated. But she says don't worry, we will go home together after the nuclear power plant settles down."
  • "I haven't got used to the life yet, because I have to live separately from my mom," he said walking into the Minamisuna Primary School. "I miss her."
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  • Dozens of schools were wiped out or too badly damaged to reopen in Miyagi prefecture.
  • Governments and educators are scrambling to repair schools, round up teachers and cope with the tens of thousands of displaced people.
  • A different set of problems in Fukushima, where authorities have begun testing schools, kindergartens and playgrounds across the prefecture after parents expressed worries about high levels of radiation.
  • "In response to it, we conduct to check radiation level to secure the (safety) of the children."
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