The convention on the rights of the child submitted to committee on the rights of the child


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(A) Education including vocational training and guidance (article 28)

  1. The Constitution has guaranteed the education and cultural rights as fundamental rights. Article 17 of the Constitution ensures the rights of each community to receive basic education in their mother tongue, the right to receive free basic education and the right to preserve and promote its language, script, culture, cultural civilization and heritage.

  1. A number of wide-ranging and remarkable policy and program changes have taken place in the education sector of the country. Accordingly, the GoN has adopted a number of policy initiatives including a policy of free basic education38 (up to grade eight) provision from 2009. With the significant achievements under the National Plan of Action on EFA (2001-2015) and with technical assistance from various development partners, the GoN has been implementing the School Sector Reform Program 2009/10 to 2013/14 (SSRP). The SSRP supports the MoE in various areas, in particular, social inclusion, physical infrastructure development, financial management, decentralization, institution development and financing, and sector management for overall improvement in quality and coverage of basic education including vocational and technical education.

  1. The SSRP is a long-term strategic plan to achieve the goals and objectives of basic and secondary education that the GoN has envisioned for the years. This was reviewed and widely accepted by development partners and civil society. The plan comprises the key strategic interventions and the estimated financial resources required to implement these strategies. The GoN has envisioned a phase-wise plan for a compulsory basic education policy through statutory arrangement at national and local levels. The GoN has also promoted an incentive scheme in a few VDCs of some districts to encourage local bodies to adopt and declare basic education free and compulsory in their respective areas under the SSRP.

  1. The education policies under the SSRP are to establish more schools on the basis of school mapping; bring schools closer to home and ensure greater provisions for community involvement in schooling; expand Early Child Development (ECD)/pre-primary education; provide free (no monthly fees and free textbooks) education up to grade eight; and ensure provisions towards compulsory basic education. The policies also are to target scholarship programs for girls, Dalits, children with disabilities, children in Karnali region and indigenous nationalities (Janjati) in selected districts; provision of mid-day meals and oil-for-education in 26 hill and mountain districts. The policy is also targeted to mainstream Gumbas, Madarsa and other religious institutions in formal education system. Similarly, the continuous assessment and liberal promotion policy, in particular, at primary level; literacy campaigns in low literacy districts; and gradual increase in annual budgetary allocations for basic and primary education are also recognized as appropriate education policies under the SSRP.

  1. Following the policy and addressing the CRC recommendations, the GoN has gradually increased the annual budgetary allocation for primary and basic education. In 2010, 17 per cent of its national budget was allocated to education (highest allocation amongst different sectors). The development partners are supporting financially and technically in the implementation of EFA and SSRP.

  1. Likewise, the representation from women, Dalit and ethnic groups are also ensured in the different management committees of education to make education management more inclusive, and address the issue of disparities in education.

  1. The Schools as Zone of Peace (SZOP) initiative is continuing improving school environments where children can learn and develop themselves while being safe from violence and other political activities. This initiative has brought together community groups, including child clubs, School Management Committees (SMCs) and political groups to develop and agree upon codes of conduct. The codes of conduct aim to reduce school closures due to political activities, to improve school governance, to reduce the presence of armed forces in and around schools, to resolve internal conflicts, to hold political parties accountable for their commitments with regard to schools, to eliminate the misuse of school facilities, and to increase inclusiveness at the school level.

  1. The number of primary, lower secondary and secondary schools increased significantly between 2003 and 2009. The total registered primary, lower secondary and secondary schools reached 31,655, 11,341 and 6,926 in the school year 2009-10 from 27,268, 8,249 and 4,741 respectively in the school year 2003-04. The GoN has been able to increase the number of schools and provide easy access to basic education during the reporting period.

  1. The NER at primary level has increased remarkably (93.7%); however, it is 2.3 per cent short of the target (96% in 2009) set under EFA. In addition, there is an increase in the NER at lower secondary level (63.2% in 2009) as well. The GoN has reviewed progress and challenges to achieve the target of EFA program in coordination and collaboration with development partners.

  1. There is an increase in NER among Janjatis and other marginalized groups at primary level. Moreover, the trend within various castes under the social group is not being projected, as the MoE collects educational statistics under Janjati for 22 groups, whereas the GoN has identified 59 groups under indigenous nationalities/Janjati group in Nepal.

  1. The trends of enrolment at primary (1-5), lower secondary (6-8) and basic (1-8) levels were encouraging between 2004 and 2009. The average annual growth rate at primary, lower secondary and basic levels are 4.0, 2.1 and 3.5 per cent respectively. The gender equality in terms of enrolment is almost similar in terms of population of girls of the age group. The enrolment rate of girls at basic level (1-8 grades) is 49.8 per cent. Nepal has achieved the target of EFA in terms of enrolment of girls at basic level education.

  1. The MoE has initiated to calculate survival rate to grade five using an internationally accepted reconstructive cohort model from the school year 2008. Accordingly, the survival rate in 2008 was reported at 73.4 per cent that has increased to 77.9 per cent in 2009.

  1. With the measures for liberal promotion, promoting child friendly schools and physical infrastructure development approach, the GoN has been able to reduce the dropout rate (6.5%) of children from primary level in academic year 2009 from the dropout rate (10.2 per cent) of academic year 2003. In addition, there is a significant achievement in reducing the repetition rate of student at primary level. The repetition rate at primary level in the academic year 2009 was 14.4 per cent from 22.3 per cent in the academic year 2003.

  1. Many special scholarship schemes (Dalit, Girls, Martyr’s, Karnali region and Disabilities) are being implemented under the SSRP. Since 2009, a separate educational rehabilitation program has been implemented for withdrawn Kamalhari (Girl child of Kamaiya serving as domestic worker) in five Kamaiya prone districts of far and mid-western development regions.

  1. The number of teachers at primary and lower secondary levels has increased significantly from the number reported in 2004. The total number of teachers at primary and lower secondary levels are 153,536 (60,826 female and 92,710 male) and 40,259 (9,938 female and 30,321 male) respectively. Thus, the total number of teachers at basic level (1-8 grades) reached 193,795 (70,764 female and 123,031 male). The GoN effort to recruit more female teachers under the Rahat (relief) quota has contributed to increasing the number of female teachers.

  1. The number of trained teachers at primary and lower secondary levels has increased in recent years. The number of trained teachers at basic level (1-8 grades) has reached 163,398 (58,808 female and 104,590 male). The share of trained female teachers (36%) at basic level is still low in comparison to trained male teachers (64%). The GoN has a plan to train more female teachers and teachers recruited by communities under the SSRP.

  1. The GoN has launched literacy campaigns in identified low literacy districts to achieve the goal set by EFA program. According to the Nepal Labour Force Survey (NLFS) 2008, literacy rate among the age between 15–24-years is 86.5 per cent in 2008. This is higher than the target set under the EFA for 2009.

  1. The GoN has continued to provide more ECD or Pre-Primary Classes (PPC) in its education plan since 2001. ECD/PPC is aimed at improving internal efficiency of primary and basic education and is focused on social, emotional, intellectual and physical development of children. Under the SSRP, the concentration is on increasing access of vulnerable and marginalized children. The number of ECD/PPC centres has increased significantly within the period from 2002 to 2009-10. The total number of ECD/PPC centres throughout the country was 29,089 in 2008. These centres have been managed by both schools and communities. The share of private centres is low (3,636). The enrolment of students with ECD/PPC experience to grade one has increased between 2002 (10.9%) and 2009 (49.9%) indicating for high chance of continuing schooling of these children39.

  1. The number of children enrolled in ECD and PPC has increased by 24 per cent between 2003 and 2009. The massive expansion of ECD and PPC has contributed to increasing access to children in ECD and PPC.

  1. The gross enrolment rate (GER) of Dalit and Indigenous nationalities/Janjati children in ECD and PPC has also increased between 2004 (39.4%) and 2009 (66.2%), indicating a high participation rate of Dalit and indigenous nationalities/Janjati communities in ECD/PPC.

  1. The GoN made budgetary allocation to continue ECD/PPC centres including additional 2000 new centres in Fiscal Year 2010-11 with a view to educating children from economically and socially deprived classes40.

  1. The Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training (CTEVT) has also been included under SSRP and various initiatives have been taken to increase access of all children from all sections of the society to technical education and vocational training. Many private institutions in affiliation with CTEVT have provided technical education and vocational training to eligible youths and children. About 63,000 children aged 14 to 17 years are estimated (period covering 2006 to 2008) to have received formal training in different vocational subjects, out of which about 37,000 (57.8%) children have received training in computer science41.

  1. The rate of out-of-school children at primary and lower secondary levels has decreased from 16.5 per cent at primary and 57.1 per cent at secondary level to 5.3 per cent and 36.8 per cent respectively between 2003 and 200942.

  1. The GoN has drafted a Bill to amend the Education Act 1971. The draft Bill has proposed provision for prohibiting corporal punishments at schools. The SSRP has adopted an approach to introduce a code of conduct for teachers at school that also prevents and prohibits corporal punishments at schools.

  1. The SSRP has a policy of free alternative programs and condensed courses to allow students who cannot attend formal schools to catch up with their cohort group to complete the cycle. With this policy, the Department of Education (DoE) has carried out flexible schools in many needy districts on demand basis. These schools allow students to develop their learning skills and competencies to enrol at higher grade after graduating from flexible schools. This approach has mostly benefitted the children from disadvantaged groups and ethnic minorities, including slum children.

  1. The GoN has launched a literacy program under the slogan “let us be literate and enhance capacity”. The key measures adopted to promote literacy are national literacy campaign, adult literacy, women literacy I and II, post literacy programs, alternative schooling programs and school outreach programs. The expansion of community learning centres and community-based libraries are other major vehicles for continuing education.

  1. The GoN is working in partnership with more than 1,000 NGOs that are involved in providing out-of-school programs in urban and rural areas to children of disadvantaged groups and ethnic minorities, including slum children in collaboration with development partners.

(B) Aims of education (article 29)

  1. The SSRP has defined goals and objectives of ECD and Basic Education separately. The ECD aims to foster children’s all-round development, laying a firm foundation for basic education with an objective to expand access to quality ECD services for children of four years of age, to prepare them for basic education. Similarly, basic education aims to ensure equitable access to quality education through a right-based approach and promotion of a child friendly environment in schools, with an objective to ensure equitable access to quality basic education for all children between 5-12 age groups.

  1. The SSRP has adopted a policy of provisioning basic education as an entitlement. It also confirms the responsibility of the state in ensuring free and quality basic education for all children of aged 5-12 years.

  1. The DoE monitors the periodic progress in the education sector and publishes the Flash Report. This system has institutionalized the Education Management Information System (EMIS) within the education sector.

  1. In the beginning of the academic years, a planned “Welcome to School Campaign” is organized throughout the country, in close coordination and collaboration with civil society including child clubs that has contributed in increasing net enrolment rate at primary and lower secondary levels including at ECD/PPC.

  1. During the reporting period, progress has been made in the education sector particularly in terms of enrolment and gender parity. The GoN is concentrating its efforts on increasing retention and completion rate along with improving quality and child friendly environment at schools.

(C) Cultural rights of children belonging to indigenous and minority groups (article 30)

  1. The Constitution provides for rights-based, free, and universal education up to the secondary level, including primary education in mother tongues. The cultural rights of children belonging to indigenous and minority groups have been protected through the provision of the right to preserve and promote their language, script, culture, cultural civilization and heritage in the Constitution.

  1. There are 22 languages at primary level that have been used as the medium of instruction in the classroom teaching and learning activities, respecting the cultural right of indigenous nationalities and ethnic minority groups, as a transitional language support. This has assisted the children who speak in their mother tongues43.

  1. The enrolment of children in basic level education, among Dalits, ethnic groups and Janjatis, is encouraging- particularly in hills and Terai- reflecting equitable participation in education. The GoN has provisioned various schemes in for increasing access and maintaining equity in education under the SSRP.

(D) Education on human rights and civic education

  1. The GoN has designed the peace and emergency education component along with implementation mechanisms for post-conflict peace building and emergency preparedness and response in collaboration with the development partners. The strategies include: awareness-raising about the responsibilities of political actors for the protection of education rights; support for the incorporation of peace, human rights and civic education (PHRC) into curricula, teachers’ guides and textbooks; education cluster response to emergencies; and emergency preparedness capacity-building of the officials.

  1. The rights of the child issues have been included in the national curricula of different grades (6 to 10), and it is being reviewed for refining contents to promote the rights of the child. In addition, the issues of the rights of the child have been incorporated in the training curriculums of teachers, police, civil service and army. Different courses run by Kathmandu University, Purvanchal University and Tribhuvan University have a few credit hours on rights of the child.

(E) Rest, play, leisure, recreation and cultural and artistic activities (article 31)

  1. The Education Regulation 2002, amended in 2005, has made provision of children’s park as pre-requisite to run ECD/PPC.

  1. Generally, schools have a scheduled time (once a week) for extra-curricular activities that allow children to play and participate in sports activities or participate in quiz or debate competitions including participating in cultural and artistic activities. There is a leisure period each day, for one or half an hour in the schools and holiday once a week. Many schools have sports division with the availability of minimal sports materials for respecting the right of the child to play.

  1. The national television channels and Frequency Modulation (FM) radio stations transmit children’s special episodes run by children themselves for the recreation and leisure activities that are also a source of knowledge for children.

  1. There are about 2,000 community-based libraries. The higher secondary schools and campuses throughout the country have their own libraries. There are 332 libraries run by child clubs44.

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