We have been delivering human rights education in our schools since 2000 to promote non-violence, healthy communication skills, peaceful conflict resolution, human rights, tolerance and good citizenship.
In May 2012, the Agency endorsed its new Human Rights, Conflict Resolution and Tolerance (HRCRT) Policy to further stregthen human rights education in UNRWA. This policy builds upon past successes, but also draws from international best practices and paves the way to better integrate human rights education in all our schools.
The HRCRT Policy reflects the UNRWA mandate of quality education for Palestine refugees and sets out a common approach among all UNRWA schools for the teaching and learning of human rights, conflict resolution and tolerance. The vision of the policy is to “provide human rights education that empowers Palestine refugee students to enjoy and exercise their rights, uphold human rights values, be proud of their Palestinian identity, and contribute positively to their society and the global community. “
The HRCRT Policy is also a key element of the wider Education Reform in UNRWA.
The HRCRT Toolkit was developed in 2013 as a practical guide to support teachers and school managers in implementing the HRCRT Policy and update the approach to teaching and learning human rights in UNRWA schools.
It provides a general guide on human rights, as well as planning tools for its integration at schools, and 40 child-friendly activities that will develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes of students towards a culture of human rights.
The HRCRT Toolkit was developed in a fully participatory manner and then improved according to feedback received during its testing phase in UNRWA schools in the West Bank and Gaza. Currently, all teachers and school managers are being trained to help them make the best use of the HRCRT Toolkit. In this way, each and every UNRWA teacher can play a crucial role in strengthening a culture of human rights in UNRWA institutions that serve 500,000 Palestine refugee students.
Read the HRCRT teacher toolkit
The UNRWA School Parliaments: Good Practices Booklet is a compilation of good practices from UNRWA School Parliaments in all five fields of operations. The practices reflect how School Parliaments have been working to raise awareness and take action on human rights. The Booklet provides an easy to read summary of a range of activities undertaken by School Parliaments and as such provides a reflection of a small sample of the vast wealth of experience of UNRWA schools.
In Gaza, we have developed a dedicated human rights curriculum.
Specialists from UNRWA, the Red Cross, human rights NGOs and the wider academic community developed the comprehensive curriculum, anchored in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. All of our over 200,000 students have a dedicated human rights lesson each week.
All children are taught about:
The programme was also expanded to include vocational training centres (VTCs), where workshops promote awareness among the students and instructors of basic concepts of human rights, tolerance and conflict resolution.
The HRCRT Programme has been extended to our university-level educational science faculties in the West Bank and Jordan. It enables second-year students to learn about and practise their rights during university and to take part in the student parliament.