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A Children's Rights Perspective on Traditional Schooling and Education for Sustainable Development
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Educational sciences, Educational science, Education. (STORIES; SEP)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3539-3022
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Educational sciences, Educational science, Curriculum studies. (STORIES)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4618-0532
2019 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In times of uncertainity when war conflicts, climate catastrophes, austerity and anti-migration policies in particularly affect children we need to develop sustainabiliby policies that pay attention to the best interests of the child.

Consequently, a  successful accomplishment of the Agenda 2030 for sustainable development is strongly related to the success to put in practice the rights enshrined by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Children’s Rights international Network, CRIN 2018).

However, to pay attention to the intima relation between the sustainable development goals to the rights of the Child claims even to start from a holistic conception of Sustainability that involves ecological, economic and social dimensions of development. Furthermore, this holistic conception of development (McKenzie, 2004; Ketschau 2015; UNESCO 12; SWEDESD 2017) point out that justice issues are highly crucial and should be taken into consideration in order to stimulate sustainable development in local contexts and the world in general. 

At the same time,  the success to develop Sustainability are related to our competence to develop Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) at all levels. Furthermore, ESD needs to be understood in its broadest sense and includes “…  improving quality basic education, reorienting education to address sustainability, improving public awareness, and providing training to many sectors of society (UNESCO 2005:11). One of sector of society in which ESD training is central is higher education (UNESCO 2005, 2012, 2017, SWEDESD 2017). Furthermore, the development of ESD in higher education (Blanco-Portela, Benayas, Pertierra & Lozano 2017) needs both of external pressures as well as local actions backed up by national polices. 

This contribution aims to discuss about the role of higher education to develop and disseminate research knowledge on the rights on the Child in and to Education in their work to promote Sustainable Development (SD) and Sustainable Development Education (SDE). With this purpose it introduces a thematic analysis of a national evaluation concerning the Swedish higher education institutions (HEI) work to promote  SD and SDE with focus on the convention of the Rights of the Child. The focuses on this analysis is not to evaluate the HEI:s work. It focuses instead on the analysis on which way the HEI:s work to promote SD and SDE involves the rights of the Child in education and to education.

 

 

 

 

Method

The Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ) evaluated higher education institutions (HEI) university colleges work to promote sustainable development (SD) and sustainable development in education (SDE). Based on the Swedish institutions own self-evaluations concerning their work, an assessment panel made this evaluation that only led to recommendations for the development of SD and SDE at higher education. Thematic analysis (Braun & Clarke 2006) of these of self-evaluation reports as well as the assessment panels evaluation are selected as methodology for this study. In this thematic analysis we identified themes (patterns) within the data stating from following research questions: *How are children’s rights to and in education treated in the universities self-evaluations concerning their work to promote sustainable development? *In which way is Agenda 2030 related to the Convention of the Rights of the Child? *In which disciplines are children’s rights to and in education related to Sustainable development? *Which kind of strategies are used by these disciplines to related children’s right to education in their work to promote sustainable development? *Which are the potential areas to development in the work to related children’s right to education in their work to promote sustainable development?

Expected Outcomes

This research is an ongoing study that shows the following preliminary result: Only 7 of the 22 self-evaluation reports include The Convention of the Right of the Child as education content related to SDE at higher education level. Furthermore, the analysis shows that only a reduced number of higher education programs/disciplines relates CRC with SDE in these 7 self-evaluation reports. These disciplines/programs are: education science, teacher education and arts studies for teachers. The thematic analysis shows that CRC is related to democracy education as well as knowledge about children's life conditions.Focusing on teacher education, SDE in these 7 universities aims to develop teacher students’ competence to: *to act at the school practice paying attention to CRC. *to reflect over children’s life conditions in relation to Agenda 2030 *to reflect over the relation of SDE, CRC and Democracy *to reflect over esthetics, social and scientific aspects of SDE paying attention to CRC The preliminary analysis of this research shows a limited number and forms of SDE teaching activities at higher education that pay attention to the CRC. This lack of interrelation between SDE and CRC risks the development of SDE from a holistic perspective at the higher education level. This study is based on an analysis of SDE in Sweden. However, the findings of this study can be relevant for other national contexts because it discusses about the role of higher education to develop and to disseminate research knowledge on Sustainable Development (SD) that pay attention to the best interests of the child. This discussion contributes even to develop scientific knowledge about the relation between the Agenda 2030 and the CRC in Higher education institutions' work to promote SD.

References

Braun, V. & Clarke, V. (2006) Using thematic analysis in psychology, Qualitative Research in Psychology, 3:2, 77-101 Child Rights International Network, CRIN (2018) Protection of the rights of the child and the 2030 agenda for sustainable development https://www.crin.org/en/library/publications/protection-rights-child-and-2030-agenda-sustainable-development Ketschau, J. (2015). Social Justice as a Link between Sustainability and Educational Sciences. Sustainability 2015, 7, 15754 -15771. McKenzie, S. (2004). Social sustainability: towards some definitions. Hawke Research Institute Working Paper Series N°27. South Australia: University of South Australia Magill Portela B., Benayas J. Pertierra L.R. Lozano R. (2017) Towards the integration of sustainability in Higher Education Institutions: A review of drivers of and barriers to organizational change and their comparison against those found of companies. Journal Cleaner Production. Februari 2017 World Commission on Environment and Development,1987; UNESCO (2005) International Implementation Scheme (IIS) for the DESD.Paris, UNESCO. https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000148654 UNESCO, (2012) Shaping the education of tomorrow: 2012 full length report on the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000216472 SWEDESD (Swedish International Centre of Education for Sustainable Development) (2017) Visby Recommendations for enhancing ESD in Teacher Education, THE CONFERENCE ‘BRIDGING THE GAP - EDUCATORS AND TRAINERS’ VISBY 21-24 AUG 2016 http://swedesd.uu.se/digitalAssets/611/c_611672-l_1-k_report_btg2017.pdf

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019.
Keywords [en]
Children's rights, Sustainable development, Higher Education
National Category
Pedagogy Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-31358OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-31358DiVA, id: diva2:1381759
Conference
EERA/ECER European Education Research Association Conference Hamburg 2019
Available from: 2019-12-27 Created: 2019-12-27 Last updated: 2020-01-07Bibliographically approved

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Francia, GuadalupeEdling, Silvia

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