By Sailu Bah
A five day seminar on Promoting Children’s Rights at School, organised
by Action Aid International The Gambia (AAITG), is underway at the organisation’s head office in Kanifing.
The seminar which commenced yesterday, 23 March 2015, is aimed atbuilding the capacity of stakeholders in promoting the rights of
children in school.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Madam Kadjatou Jallow, AAITG
Education Adviser, underscored the importance of the seminar in helping
to generate ideas on how to improve the rights of students in school
as well as improve the education system.
She said during the course of the sessions, participants will be taken to
schools in order for them to collect relevant information on the
issues relating to the welfare of children and their education and
to determine whether there is need for improvement.
She also highlighted some of the issues that pose as challenges to the
education of young people such as the findings on the abuse of the
internet by students, the issue of teachers dating students, schools
being used as dumpsites, etc.
“It is very important to be going on the ground to see what is
happening in order to be able to come up with tangible solutions to
those problems as partners,” said the AAITG Education Adviser.
Madam Jallow also called on the Local Government Authorities (LGAs) to
get engaged and help in addressing some of these challenges.
She listed the 10 rights of children in schools as the ‘Right to Free
and Compulsory Education’, ‘Right to Non Discrimination’, ‘Right to
Adequate infrastructure’, ‘Right to quality trained teachers’, ‘Right
to a safe and non-violent environment’, ‘Right to relevant education’,
‘Right to know their rights’, ‘Right to participate’, ‘Right to
transparent and accountable schools’ and ‘Right to quality learning’.
Mr. Bakary Fadera said the low literacy rate among women and children
need to be improved as well as the quality of teachers to enhance
quality delivery services to students.
For his part, Mr. Musa Jobarteh said every child has the right to
education which is clearly stipulated in the Gambian Constitution.
He said it is the responsibility of the state to provide each and
every child access to education without any discrimination.
The participants include those from organisations representing
children’s rights, youth, local authorities, members of the security
forces, among others.
By Sailu Bah