Inspired by the Swiss-Ukrainian authorities’ initiative which organised in 2011 – 2012 two study visits for decision makers and education professionals in order to exchange and share information on the implementation of the principles and objectives of the Council of Europe Charter on education for democratic citizenship and human rights education, the Council of Europe and the European Commission initiated a pilot project scheme on “Human rights and democracy in action”.
This programme which intends to contribute to the development of sustainable mechanisms of promotion of citizenship and human rights education is based on pilot projects involving at least two and up to five states party to the European Cultural Convention, including at least one member state to the European Union. The goal of the pilot projects is to document all existing forms of promotion of citizenship and human rights education in the participating countries.
On 10 May, a call for pilot project proposals was launched to the coordinators on citizenship and human rights education, who are officially nominated representatives of the states party to the European Cultural Convention for the liaison with the Council of Europe in this area. The deadline for the submission of the proposals is 7 June. An Advisory Board will proceed with the selection of the pilot projects which will be funded. The selected projects will be announced on 17 June.
For further information: Concept
The programme of national training courses in human rights education of the Youth Department continues in 2013 aiming to continue to supporting the development of human rights education through youth work and non-formal learning. The courses are organised at the initiative of national organisations or institutions interested in introducing, and developing the provisions and quality of human rights education. With this call, the Council of Europe’s Youth Department invites for expressions of interest for training courses to be held in 2013.
The Guidelines for Educators to Counter Intolerance and Discrimination against Muslims will be the focus of a hearing which will take place on 26 June 2012 at the Summer Session of Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).
During the hearing approximately 130 participants, mainly members of PACE, but also civil society activists, diplomats and journalists will discuss how intolerance and discrimination against Muslims can be addressed through education and how the Guidelines for educators can be helpful in this regard.
On 25 April 2012, a questionnaire on the implementation of the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education [Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)7] was addressed to the 47 Council of Europe member states. The aim of the questionnaire is to collect information on the latest developments in the member states in the field of citizenship and human rights education, to facilitate exchange of good practice and to help identify priorities for future co-operation.
The member states are invited to complete the questionnaire in consultation with national human rights structures and civil society organisations. Based on the replies from the governments, it is foreseen to prepare a report, which will serve as a basis for discussion at the Conference on “Human Rights and Democracy in Action - Looking Ahead: The impact of the Council of Europe Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education”. The Conference will bring together about 200 participants, including government representatives, international institutions, civil society organisations and education professionals, and will be organised in co-operation with the European Commission and the European Wergeland Centre (Strasbourg, 29-30 November 2012).
The Charter was adopted on 11 May 2010 by the Ministers for Foreign Affairs and representatives of the 47 Council of Europe member states at the 120th Session of the Committee of Ministers. The Charter is an important reference point for all of Europe and provides the basis for the Council of Europe’s work in this field.
“Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Project” brought together some 200 key stakeholders at its Launching Event in Rixos Hotel Ankara. The three year project (6.1 million Euros) is being implemented in partnership with the Ministry of National Education and the Board of Education in 20 pilot schools in 10 provinces throughout Turkey. In his opening address, Education Minister Ömer Dinçer said the overhaul of the curriculum would be an “important step toward strengthening [education on] human rights, democracy and equal opportunity for men and women.” (full speech) EU Ambassador Jean-Maurice Ripert announced that the budget allocated for the project was one of the largest in Europe in this realm, adding that “teaching democracy and human rights in school is an important part of creating a democratic society”. (full speech) The Head of the Council of Europe’s Education Department, Sjur Bergan, emphasized that democratic citizenship and human rights education cannot be reduced to a subject but should be considered as a whole school approach - not a subject studied for 2 hours a week but a set of attitudes and behaviours that follow us 24 hours a day. (full speech).
The launching event received wide media coverage.