Convention on the Rights of the Child: the right to education (6/8)

All the people of the world have rights. Children need special protection and therefore, special rights as well. The Convention on the Rights of the Child includes all the rights but also all the obligations relating to children.

Article 28: Children should go to school

Children have the right to learn what interests them, what they need in their dealings with others. That is why all countries have schools.

The Convention states that going to school is an obligation.

Primary school must be free. All children should go to school regularly for nine years. At the end of compulsory education, children should be able to choose to learn a profession or go further in their studies. For many children, it’s a difficult period so it is helpful when there are professional consulting services or career guidance services to help children and parents. Teachers should be encouraged to try to create a positive learning atmosphere within the classroom. Children learn better in classrooms where everyone is accepted, where pupils help each other, laugh together, organise parties and promote discussions. In case of punishment, the teacher should be careful not to humiliate the children or child, and certainly not physically or mentally harm him or her.

Article 29: What should be learnt at school

At school, children should not only read, write and calculate. Children should also discover their personal skills and develop them. They should learn to form an opinion and how to express it, and also to listen and accept the opinions of others. They should learn to work together to find solutions to issues that arise when their opinions differ.

They should learn to stay informed and to put their ideas into practice. It is important that all children are able to learn about the customs and rituals of their country. They should feel comfortable and proud when they dance, sing and live according to their traditions

Children need to know and speak their native language.

All girls and boys have the same rights and the same obligations. Foreign children must have the same rights as children in the country.

Every child should learn the importance of respect towards others.

Hearing that peace is preferable to war, that the protection of the environment is more important than its destruction, children learn to feel responsible for their land and nation as a whole. Learning also means living in harmony with that knowledge. Sometimes it is difficult to find a common and equitable solution when you are not of the same view with someone. But whatever the situation, we must try. 

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Know the rights of the child to better achieve them:

Illustrations specially drawn by Fati Kabuika from the Congolese organization BD Kin Label

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Pona Bana

Pona Bana, qui signifie « pour les enfants » en lingala, est le blog des jeunes en République Démocratique du Congo. Lieu d’échange et d’information, Pona Bana est également un instrument pour encourager la participation des enfants.

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