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Newsletter: From Evidence to Action

Education

The Right to Education for Children Aged 5-18 years is one in a series of topical guides developed for PAN:Children that provides key information on the current state of affairs in South Africa related to access to quality education. It highlights practical guidance, lessons learned and case studies (both national and international) that will be helpful in policy development dialogue and knowledge sharing. The focus of the guide is:

  • The quality of education: Educational outcomes, Teacher performance, support and M&E,School management,Curricula
  • School infrastructure not always adequate to provide an enabling learning environment – mud schools, water and sanitation, libraries, laboratories etc
  • Drop-out rate as children move into higher grades
  • Insufficient access to education for children with disabilities

The topical guide is rich with references and these are available in the sub-sections below, which are arranged according to 'type' of document for example Policy Briefs or Country Studies.

Feedback on the topical guide is welcomed and can be submitted to [email protected]. The PAN secretariat also welcomes any additional documentation which is aligned to the focus of this guide.


Related publications

This policy brief introduces systematic reviews and evidence gap maps as two relatively new types of synthesised evidence in South African context. It explains why these synthesis tools are particularly valuable for the policy-making processes. It offers a brief history of their development, their main characteristics and procedures, as well as the main resources where they are found. In addition, it describes current production levels and usage of these synthesis tools in South Africa, and concludes with a call for greater attention and use of these tools to improve research evidence availability in the policy-making processes. 

Link: Policy brief

Globally the use of corporal punishment in schools is increasingly prohibited in law, yet in many countries its use continues, even where outlawed. Proponents argue that it is an effective and non-harmful means of instilling discipline, respect and obedience in children, while others point to a series of detrimental effects, including physical harm, poor academic performance, low class participation, school dropout and declining psychosocial well-being. Using longitudinal data from Young Lives, this Brief summarises research examining whether corporal punishment in schools is associated with lasting effects on children’s cognitive development.The brief is part of the UNICEF Multi-Country Study on the Drivers of Violence Affecting Children.

After the launch of the National Development Plan Vision 2030 of South Africa in August 2012, the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) South Africa commissioned a study that explored available policy options for addressing poverty traps and social exclusion among children in South Africa and the additional national and societal efforts that are needed to break such traps. Poverty Traps and Social Exclusion among Children in South Africa was nominated by UNICEF as one of the 12 best policy research reports done globally for them in 2014 (See Best of UNICEF Research 2014, https://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/742). At this seminar, five policy briefs drawn from the research will launched and shared.

Link: Policy brief

RIATT-ESA is seeking to improve understanding and build the evidence base around the kinds of interventions which are most effective in improving outcomes for children made vulnerable by HIV and AIDS in the family. Related to this is how children's health, protection, care and support are interrelated. RIATT-ESA consequently commissioned secondary analyses of existing data sets in the eastern and Southern Africa region (ESA) and systematic reviews in order to better understand how children affected by AIDS in the region are made vulnerable. In particular the research sought to establish if and how being orphaned by HIV and AIDS leads to an increased likelihood of negative outcomes for children in comparison to other orphans or non-orphans. This included investigating factors that can predict vulnerability and tracking the different pathways by which HIV and AIDS impacts child outcomes, hence identifying key risks to children for targeted action.

Link: Policy brief

A longitudinal survey of over 3,000 girls found that cash transfers to poor households allow teenage girls to make safer sexual choices. They reduce reliance on 'sugar daddies' to provide basic needs. However, cash transfers do not reduce all HIV-infection risks, and must be part of combination prevention approaches. Click here to view other research in this series.

Link: Policy Paper

'Governments identified conflict as a major barrier towards getting all children into school when they signed the Dakar Framework for Action in 2000. They recognized that children in conflict-affected countries are robbed of an education not only because schools may be closed and teachers absent, but also because they are exposed to widespread abuses' http://efareport.wordpress.com/2013/07/12/children-still-battling-to-go-...

This policy brief argues for a policy direction to develop a culture of formative assessment through what is termed ANA Professional Development (ANA_PD) programmes.

Many young fathers want to be active parents and have a strong sense of responsibility towards their children. They are, however, confronted with numerous barriers. This policy brief makes recommendations for policies and programmes to increase young fathers’ chances of being positive, involved parents.

South Africa has a high enrolment rate and a high investment rate in education (about 5 per cent of GDP), but education is still of unsatisfactory quality. This policy brief proposes wider usage of value-added assessment (VAA) and analysis (which provides a more reliable estimate of the value added – the extent to which schools make a difference in their learners’ achievement levels) in policy decision-making.

Brief overview of a number of alternative models used in both developing and developed countries for the delivery of core educational activities through private contracted service providers to improve the quality of education. It provides a comparative analysis of the cost and quality of educational outcomes commonly associated with each of the different models.

Policy brief on findings that socio-economic status has a significant impact on primary school learner performance. Poorer learners often suffer poor educational outcomes: They start school with a disadvantage that stays with them because they face financial, resource, infrastructure and institutional constraints. Although such broad observations should inform the basic foundations of education policy, they are not particularly useful when it comes to formulating and prioritising practical, detailed and actionable policy measures. A recent study analyses the reading and maths test scores of a set of Grade 6 school learners and identifies various key factors that affected their performance. In addition, results are broken down according to socio-economic grouping to identify those policy measures which, if implemented, will have a positive impact on educational outcomes in general, and on the performance of poor learners specifically.

This Children Count brief provides an overview of the situation of children in South Africa, drawing on data from the first wave of the National Income Dynamics Study. NIDS is a national panel survey, and the fieldwork for the first wave was done in 2008. Households and individuals covered in the first wave will be tracked every two years. This will allow researchers to follow the progress of the child panel over time and place, and thereby describe the dynamics of child poverty rather than present a static profile. The data from the first wave serves as a baseline.

The Multidimensional Poverty Index or MPI is an international poverty measure developed by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) for the United Nations Development Programme’s flagship Human Development Report. The innovative index reflects the multiple deprivations that a poor person faces with respect to education, health and living standards. This brief summarises the method and key findings for 2011 and shows how the MPI can be used.

The Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) is an international measure of poverty. Covering 109 developing countries, the MPI complements income poverty and Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) measures by reflecting the acute deprivations that people face at the same time. It identifies people who contend with multiple deprivations across three dimensions: education, health, and living standards.

This article investigates inequalities in children’s schooling in South Africa in 2008 using community-based data collected by the National Income Dynamics Study (NIDS). ­

Link: Publication

Ukufunda is the name of the virtual school that was developed by Mxit Reach, UNICEF and the Department of Basic Education (DBE). It’s an innovation in the South African education system that will address inequalities in the school system, raise education standards and put the power of education in the hands of every learner, teacher and parent.

Steps for engaging young children in research is a comprehensive resource developed for academics and practitioner researchers wanting to include the perspectives of young children in their research.

During 2010 the Minister  of Basic Education, Mrs Angie Motshekga, declared that there would be a plan for schools in South Africa called Action Plan to 2014, and that  this would form part of a larger vision called Schooling 2025. This Action Plan explains the 27 national goals that lie at the heart of the plan. Thirteen of these goals are output goals dealing with better school results and better enrolment of learners in schools. The remaining fourteen goals deal with things that must happen for the output goals to be realised.

The Manual is intended not only to clarify some of the technical concepts presented in international human rights law but also, more importantly, to stand on its own as a useful reference tool for those who would like to gain a deeper understanding of how these concepts relate to education. In summarizing and analysing the major human rights treaties and conventions from the perspective of education, this manual presents the key rights as they relate to children, parents and governments, and the corresponding obligations, especially of governments, that must be met to fulfil those rights.

This handbook provides Members of Parliament with information on children’s issues and their rights. Its purpose is to equip MPs with the tools to integrate a child-rights perspective into all work that Members engage with.

BRIDGE has prepared a summary of the recommendations of the Department of Basic Education (DBE) and the Department of Performance and Monitoring (DPME)’s 2014 Grade R Impact Evaluation and an overview of the QCTO qualification process as quick fact sheets for Early Childhood Development (ECD) stakeholders.

Evaluation Update is a summary of progress on establishing the South African National Evaluation System, led by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency (DPME). 

 

An Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) analysis of the education component of the Mexican government’s welfare programme, Progresa, which aims to reduce rural poverty. It argues that increasing the grant for secondary school children while eliminating it at the primary age would strengthen Progresa’s impact.

Link: Publication

Every day 700 children acquire HIV; however, in 2011 only one third of children exposed to HIV were tested for the virus within the recommended two months. This is largely because it requires complex laboratory technology that is often only available at central laboratories. Also, results can take a long time to come back, which means that families do not always return for the results and never learn of a child’s HIV status. Without knowing the HIV status of a child it is impossible to access life-saving treatment. Without treatment, half of all children born with HIV will die by the age of two and the majority will die by the age of five.

Online data from a report which systematically presents comparative data on laws and public policies in 191 countries covering areas essential to children's healthy development. Changing children's chances examines policy data and their impact in the areas of poverty, discrimination, education, health, child labour, child marriage, and parental care. The report provides a global picture of the policy tools governments can use to make a difference to children's opportunities in life. The website summarizes key original findings from databases on current laws and policies in UN member states.

National Income Dynamics Study Waves 1 & 2 schools administrative data files and documentation. The NIDS User Guide describes the process of creating Schools Administrative Datasets for the NIDS Wave 1 & 2 respondents.

Chapter in Saving children 2009: Five years of data: A sixth survey of child healthcare in South Africa which makes a set of recommendations that have arisen from analysis of the overall Child PIP data and of each of the main causes of mortality in young children. The recommendations are targeted at different key functions within the health sector and are thus divided into four sections, namely policy, management and administration, clinical practice and education.

This is an annual report intended as a snapshot of the child rights climate in South Africa, It includes discussions about children and law reform, children participating in social dialogue and datasets.

The National Learner Transport Policy has been presented to parliament. Transportation of learners to their respective schools has always been a key challenge confronting government in South Africa. The department has through various studies, such as the National Household Travel Survey of 2013, and the interactions with affected stakeholders, noted that most learners have difficulty in accessing schools in both urban and rural settings. The development of this learner transport policy aims to address the challenges of accessibility and safety of learners. The National Learner Transport Policy was developed in collaboration with the Department of Basic Education and other stakeholders.

Link: Publication

In 2010 government established the Department of Performance Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency, recently renamed the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation. Many monitoring systems have been established, and this is the first annual report on the National Evaluation System.

Link: Publication

This White Paper sets out government's response to a new information and communication technology environment in education.

PAN:Children from time to time invites experts in the child rights field to write opinion editorials on specific topics to stimulate debate. This piece on the gaps in the implementation of legislative provisions and policy pertaining to children with disabilities in South Africa was written by Sue Philpott an expert in disability issues in South Africa.

Proposed legislation with the aim of redressing the inequalities of the past and allowing for the post-school development of skills. The aim is to investigate existing institutions and to explore the possibility of the creation of new kinds of institutions which could lead to more people in South Africa developing the skills required for employment in different sectors.

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Resolution adopted by the General Assembly: 55/2.

‘The Minister of Education, after consultation with the Council of Education Ministers, the Financial and Fiscal Commission and the Minister of Finance,hereby give notice in terms of section 35 of the South African Schools Act, 1996 (No. 84 of 1996), and section 3(4)(9) of the National Education Policy Act, 1996 (No. 27 of 1996) of the national norms and standards for school funding, as set out in the Schedule.’

To provide for a uniform system for the organisation, governance and funding of schools; to amend and repeal certain laws relating to schools; and to provide for matters connected therewith.

An international charter drawing-together a variety of international principles to highlight and protect the rights of young people on the African continent. This document sets out a comprehensive package of rights, canvassing numerous areas including civil and political and socio-economic rights.

Documents South Africa’s social and economic plan for eliminating poverty and reducing inequality and incorporates a number of child-specific developmental goals.

Policy framework for post-apartheid restructuring of social welfare services, programmes and social security and emphasises the need for attaining equity and redress through social development.

The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, was approved by the Constitutional Court (CC) on 4 December 1996 and took effect on 4 February 1997. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land. No other law or government action can supersede the provisions of the Constitution.

This is an international treaty created by the African Union. It sets out the rights of the child and the obligations of its signatory states to bring about realisation of these rights. Widely ratified, it is one of the key child rights documents for African states.

An international treaty setting out the rights of the child. This instrument has been ratified by almost all states worldwide and is considered a key child rights document.

Document(s): PDF icon Study.pdf
Link: Details

The African Committee of Experts on the Rights and Welfare of the Child (ACERWC) released its first ever comprehensive study on the impact of conflicts and crisis on children in Africa during its 28th Ordinary Session in Banjul, The Gambia. The study concentrates on conflicts and crises across Africa over the last 10 years and the measures by State and non-State actors to protect the rights of children during and in the aftermath of such situations. It addresses psychological impact, education, health, nutrition/food security, separation from parents/caregivers, and sexual and gender-based violence. Child rights underlie its analysis, particularly the best interest of the child; the rights to life, survival and development; and respect for the views of the child as evidenced through children’s voices.Being the first of its kind at the level of an Organ of the African Union, the study draws urgency towards Member States to address the challenges that children are facing in conflict situations and halt recruiting and using children for military purposes. Taking the new challenges into consideration, the study, particularly, urges for a high level commitment from Member States to establish effective and functioning mechanisms to address the impact of conflict and crises on children and provide for the care and protection of children affected by armed conflict. 

Inequality among different socio-economic, racial and gender groups is a salient topic in South Africa. Specifically in education, the South African education system exhibits a skew distribution of achievement levels for an upper-middle-income developing country. It is thus critical to assess educational inequality in order to address the systemic factors which inhibit the attainment of an equitable educational system. The analysis of data from the 2011 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) provides an opportunity to examine this issue from a number of different perspectives.

TIMSS is an international study which assesses mathematics and science knowledge at the Grades 4, 8 and 9 levels. South Africa has participated in four rounds of TIMSS Grade 8 and 9 surveys over the last 20 years. The analysis of this data has allowed the Human Sciences Research Council to examine the key policy areas of gender equity, safety and security, educational pathways and the impact of inequality. In addition, the emerging issue of learner attitudes as a significant factor in understanding learner achievement has been explored. Using this data, four policy briefs and a journal article have been published which contextualise mathematics and science achievement within the broader South African landscape of inequality and poverty. In a bid to deepen the South African education agenda, it is necessary to engage key stakeholders in critical discussion in key policy areas and emerging policy debates.

Attached are policy briefs drawn from this study and presentations from the seminar will be made available shortly

The government spends the biggest slice of its budget on education, more than any other African country. And yet the crisis persists. In How to Fix South Africa’s Schools: Lessons From Schools That Work, Jonathan Jansen, Vice Chancellor at the University of the Free State and documentary filmmaker Molly Blank look at South African schools that work, in spite of adverse conditions – hunger, poverty, lack of resources, lack of toilets, and overcrowding in both rural and urban environments – and have drawn out the practical strategies that make them successful. Some critical strategies they found include: principal leadership; parental involvement; committed teachers; understanding the whole child; a commitment to quantity and quality; motivational activities; setting performance standards and working effectively to meet them; continuous student assessment; and outside partnerships. The book includes 19 videos that chronicle the stories of these school communities.At the link above excerpts from these documentaries can be viewed.

Document(s): PDF icon UNICEF_SOWC_2016.pdf
SOWC 2016

Every child has the right to health, education and protection, and every society has a stake in expanding children’s opportunities in life. Yet, around the world, millions of children are denied a fair chance for no reason other than the country, gender or circumstances into which they are born. The State of the World’s Children 2016 argues that progress for the most disadvantaged children is not only a moral, but also a strategic imperative. Stakeholders have a clear choice to make: invest in accelerated progress for the children being left behind, or face the consequences of a far more divided world by 2030. At the start of a new development agenda, the report concludes with a set of recommendations to help chart the course towards a more equitable world.

Link: Publication

It is now accepted that high-quality early childhood education and care (ECEC) can bring lasting benefits to children from disadvantaged contexts. However, a significant number of families with young children who are disadvantaged find it difficult to take up resources in the ECEC system. As governments all over the world heed arguments that ECEC is a prudent social investment, it is useful to consider the service system from the perspective of the families targeted by these logics.

Outside of the United Kingdom, the question of how families make moral and practical decisions about their use of ECEC has received relatively little attention. This article draws on an Australian study, which explored how families who were disadvantaged imagined strong childrearing environments and then used services to progress this vision. These perspectives complicate and challenge social investment approaches that predominantly focus on the provision of childcare or preschool subsidies and places as a way of redressing social disadvantage. Many participants wanted to establish family stability and adequate material and social resources before participating in early years education. Investment in community development is an important mechanism for addressing service exclusion.

Link: Publication

An expanding body of research demonstrates that high quality early childhood education and care (ECEC) programmes generate positive outcomes for children; in response, policy makers in a number of countries are making significant programme investments. No research consensus, however, has emerged around the specific types of policy intervention that are most effective. Much remains to be clarified in terms of specific policy interventions that flow from the evidence base. To respond to these important gaps in ECEC knowledge, thsi publication advances a call for a research agenda that will systematically examine the effects of early years policy instruments and settings.

Link: Publication

This report aims to stimulate discussion and action by decision-makers and serve to inform the strategic thinking, programming and practice. It confirms well-known hindrances, identifies opportunities, and highlights how meaningful youth participation needs to address power. It calls on the broad range of actors working on child and youth development issues to take action and improve their own effectiveness and the enabling environment. While several findings identify new challenges and opportunities, others add more nuance and context to current discussions on child and youth development. The recurrence of some issues suggests that current actions are either inadequate or absent.

Link: Publication

This paper synthesises evidence about effective interventions and strategies to improve early child development, and calls for it to be included in a new global strategy on women’s, children’s, and adolescents’ health.The millennium development goal on child health has led to great improvements in child survival worldwide. Child mortality has fallen by almost 50%, resulting in an estimated 17 000 fewer children dying every day in 2013 than in 1990.Nevertheless, many children who survive do not thrive, with over 200 million children under 5 years of age at risk of not attaining their developmental potential. Physical and mental health, educational and occupational attainment, family wellbeing, and the capacity for mutually rewarding social relationships all have their roots in early childhood. We now have a good understanding of the serious implications of young children going off course, including the longer term economic and societal ramifications. 

Link: Publication

Violence and violent crime are significant social problems in South Africa. Yet currently these problems are only addressed as or after they occur, with the state and civil society missing valuable opportunities to prevent violence before it happens. This article focuses on the intersection between early childhood development services and primary violence prevention interventions. It encourages a developmental approach to violence prevention by promoting healthy physical and social development and preventing direct and indirect exposure to violence during early childhood. The article outlines the extent to which this approach is currently reflected in South Africa's policy framework and proposes areas of intervention based on local and international literature.

Link: Publication

This report outlines the research that supports each of the policy areas in the Alliance for Early Success’ recently revised Birth through Eight State Policy Framework. Research at a Glance provides an overview of the evidence base for the policy choices in the Framework, summarizing the factors that contribute to, and sustain, the healthy growth and development of young children. The revised Framework emphasizes policy options in the areas of health, family support, and learning, and policy options that bridge these three areas. - See more at: http://www.childtrends.org/our-research/early-childhood-development/#sth...

The Case for Play is Playground Ideas’ report highlighting the most significant research findings on the impact of early play interventions, particularly for children living in poverty. Long term studies have shown access to early play experiences boosts life outcomes substantially -42% raise in yearly earnings, 44% increase in high school graduations, and 17% increase in bachelor degrees. Perhaps most importantly, play builds the critical skill of self-regulation, which underpins success for a lifetime. The report complies the best research on play, spanning the fields of economics, psychology, child development, education and neuroscience.

 

Link: Publication

This helpdesk query from GSDRC answers the following question:- What evidence is there on the development outcomes of the political and social inclusion of young people? Review the evidence in lower and middle income countries for including young people (10-25 years) in political processes, formal institutions and governance structures (political inclusion) and informal institutions such as household and community structures (social inclusion). What development outcomes (positive and negative / costs and benefits) are associated with these forms of inclusion, both for the youth cohort as well as wider society?

This report from Human Rights Watch found that South Africa has failed to guarantee the right to education for many of the country’s children and young adults due to widespread discrimination against children with disabilities in enrollment decisions. Human Rights Watch research in five out of South Africa’s nine provinces showed that children with disabilities face discriminatory physical and attitudinal barriers, often beginning early in children’s lives when government officials classify them according to their disabilities. Human Rights Watch August 2015  

On 28 April 2015 the Department of Performance, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME) convened a roundtable on three diagnostics related to children. These are The diagnostic review of Early Childhood Development (ECD), Impact of Grade R on learning outcomes and the Diagnostic/implementation evaluation of nutrition interventions for  children from conception to age 5. We provide links to all related documents for each diagnostic above. Note that DPME has collated all relevant documents including improvement plans and progress reports, and in the case of the diagnostic on nutrition interventions there are a number of case studies. Attached are presentations from the Roundtable. We have also attached a policy brief on the Impact of the introduction of Grade R on learning outcomes.

Link: Publication

The year 2014 marks the seventh Labour Market Dynamics Report in South Africa since the inception of the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) in 2008. The report provides information on labour market trends over the period 2008–2014, with particular focus on labour market dynamics as provided for by QLFS panel data. Between 2008 and 2014, the number of employed persons increased from 14,6 million to 15,1 million; however, the number of unemployed persons increased from 4,3 million to 5,1 million, resulting in an increase in the unemployment rate from 22,5% in 2008 to 25,1% in 2014. In addition, the absorption rate in 2014 at 42,8% was still 3,1 percentage points below the peak reached in 2008.

Link: Publication

Education is in crisis worldwide. Millions of children, especially the most marginalized, are excluded from school. Many millions more attend school, but they do not learn basic reading and math skills. In addition, international funding for education is on the decline. The Investment Case for Education and Equity explains the global education crisis and outlines solutions. It calls for an increase in funding for education and investments that are more equitable and efficient. Complementary materials: Executive summary and Fixing the broken promise of education for all .

Link: Publication

World leaders are setting out a roadmap for human progress over the next 15 years. Known as the Sustainable Development Goals, these new global targets will drive investment and action in virtually every country on earth, touching millions of lives. That is why it is vital that every child is included – and that children everywhere are at the heart of the new global agenda. This ‘Agenda for Every Child’ sets out seven priorities that must be addressed in the new development goals.

Link: Publication

As the era of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) comes to an end in 2015, a new framework for global development will be put in place. The ‘Post-2015 Development Agenda’ will culminate in the formulation of a new set of goals and targets – the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – that will build on the progress of the MDGs and also address the shortcomings. Additional resources: Post-2015 Issue Briefs .

 

 

 

 

Link: Publication

This Advocacy Calendar highlights key international days with a strong emphasis on days established through UN's General Assembly's Resolution and key national days for 2015 as established by the Government of South Africa.

Link: Publication

The Annual National Assessment (ANA) is a critical measure for monitoring progress in learner achievement as outlined in the Education Sector Plan, Action Plan to 2014: Towards the Realisation of Schooling 2025. The report on the ANA 2013 provides the education sector with valuable information on the performance of the system at the level of the school, district and province and also useful information on the performance of the individual learner, which must be used as a guide to identify the critical areas of weakness and to develop relevant interventions for improving learning and teaching in schools.



Link: Publication

The way in which the media report on school violence influences public perceptions, gives rise to particular attitudes and can influence decisions by policy makers. The more frequently an issue is presented in a specific way, the more likely it is for readers to perceive the media’s version as the truth. Although news is assumed to be reliable, comprehensive and unprejudiced, journalism can be questioned. This study explores how school violence is framed in the South African print media. A framing analysis was done of 92 articles that appeared in 21 different public newspapers during one year.

Link: Publication

The aim of this document is to provide a basis for a discussion in government, in Parliament and in society about performance monitoring and evaluation (M&E) in government. The document proposes a set of basic principles and an approach to performance M&E that is intended to result in continuous improvement in government performance and increased accountability. It makes suggestions regarding the M&E practices that need to be implemented to achieve this and how to institutionalise them. The outcome of such a discussion will inform us of the appropriate route to take going forward, such as having M&E policies and guidelines or developing M&E legislation.

Link: Publication

During 2002 and 2003, with the support of funding from the Royal Netherlands Embassy, the South African Institute for Distance Education (SAIDE) undertook an extensive research project to investigate the use of computers for teaching and learning in South African schools. On completion of the project, SAIDE published its findings in a research report published in 2003. This project, which investigated the use of computers in 21 schools, together with research undertaken by various other organisations, shows that one of the reasons why information and communication technology (ICT) projects in schools do not succeed is that principals are often not properly informed about what ICTs can or cannot do. This often hampers their ability to manage the introduction of ICTs into their schools. 

Link: Publication

The State of the World’s Children 2014 In Numbers: Every Child Counts highlights the critical role data and monitoring play in realizing children’s rights. Credible data, disseminated effectively and used correctly, make it possible to target interventions that help right the wrong of exclusion. Data do not, of themselves, change the world. They make change possible – by identifying needs, supporting advocacy, gauging progress and holding duty bearers to account. Making the possible real is up to decision makers.

PAN: Children hosted a dialogue series focusing on children with disabilities on 10 March 2014. This dialogue was a launch of Situational Analysis report dating from year 2001 to 2011. The report highlighted the significant progress made, but also the challenges that still exist for children with disabilities in South Africa. The Situational Analysis report was undertaken by the Department of Social Development, Department of Women, Children and People with Disabilities and UNICEF. This report seeks to fill knowledge gaps that exist regarding the situation of children with disabilities, their family and community environment, the underlying causes of their situations and the adequacy of efforts by government and non-government actors to fulfil their rights.

Link: Publication

The MDG report is based on comprehensive official statistics and provides the most up-to-date summary of all Goals and their targets at global and regional levels, with additional national statistics available online. Results show that concentrated efforts to achieve MDG targets by national governments, the international community, civil society and the private sector are working to lift people out of extreme poverty and improve their futures.

Link: Publication

The 2013 report includes the domesticated indicators which are applicable to the South African context. The key feature and contributor in the 2013 MDG report has been the availability of data emerging out of the Population Census of 2011.

 

This study entails a literature review of the impact of early learning, impact estimates of early learning on learning outcomes based on existing datasets, an impact evaluation using a new dataset that can attribute causation to the measured impact of Grade R, a short fiscal analysis, and a conclusion.

Link: Publication

The World Economic Forum publishes a comprehensive series of reports which examine in detail the broad range of global issues it seeks to address with stakeholders as part of its mission of improving the state of the world. The Forum produces landmark titles covering the environment, education, individual industries and technologies. South Africa was 56th out of 144 countries on the WEF's global competitive index. The country came last, 144th out of 144 countries for maths and science teaching,140th for the quality of its education system, 117th for internet access in schools, and 133rd for quality of primary education.

 
Link: Publication

The Centre for Child Law commissioned Cornerstone Economic Research, to track school infrastucture spending and delivery. This study, amonst other things, makes the concerning finding that the Department of Basic Education has woefully underspent the allocated school infrastructure funding for two years running. The target for the number of schools to be built in 2011/2012 and 2012/2013 was 49. However, only 10 had been completed at the end of the first year.

Link: Publication

The IPEC project “Tackling child labour through education” (TACKLE) was jointly launched by the European Commission (EC) and the ILO with the support of the Secretariat of the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) in 2008 to fight child labour in 12 ACP countries (Angola, Fiji, Guyana, Jamaica, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Papua New Guinea, Sierra Leone, Sudan, South Sudan and Zambia). The objective of the TACKLE project was to contribute to the withdrawal of children engaged in child labour and to prevent further entry of children into employment by offering them alternative education and training opportunities and thereby contributing towards poverty reduction. It is hoped that this collection of good practices serves as an inspiration for their replication and contributes to the work of practitioners and policy-makers on child labour worldwide.

Link: Publication

The ILO's International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour (IPEC) Implementation Report 2014 provides a summary of the work of the Programme during the biennium 2012-2013. It also provides an overview of significant developments during the biennium including the Global Conference on child labour and new global estimates on child labour.

Link: Publication

This new report is the first in a series to be published annually by the ILO’s International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour. It brings together research on child labour and social protection, identifying policies that are designed to achieve multiple social goals. It discusses the role of poverty and economic shocks in rendering households vulnerable to child labour and considers the impact on child labour of cash transfers, public employment programmes, social insurance and other social protection initiatives as they have been implemented around the world. The report distils a broad range of research in economic and social policy and should be of interest to those looking for ways to combat poverty in the present and reduce its burden on the next generation.

Link: Publication

New report on domestic work within the framework of the two ILO fundamental conventions on child labour. It provides detailed information on current data regarding the estimated number of child domestic workers worldwide. It also explores the ambiguity of the working relationship, the discrimination and isolation associated with the practice, the hazards and risks of this type of work, as well as the vulnerability to violence and to abuse to which child domestic workers are too often exposed. It also explores policy responses to child labour and underlines the key role of the social partners and civil society organizations in the fight against child labour in domestic work. The report concludes by making a call for specific action towards ending child labour and protecting young workers in domestic work.

Link: Publication

This is the fourth issue of the ILO’s report series: Global Estimates on child labour. The present Report provides new global and regional estimates on child labour for the year 2012 and compares them with the previous estimates for 2000, 2004 and 2008.

Link: Publication

This publication is a companion volume of the "Children in Hazardous Work: What we know, what we need to do" report, outlines the problem of hazardous work and highlights possible solutions. Although it is too early to say, in most cases, that the activities included here are proven "good practices" ready for emulation, nonetheless items in this selection have already demonstrated some unique or notable elements.

Link: Publication

Fact Sheet: Generation 2030 Africa Report -  On current trends, almost 2 billion babies will be born in Africa in the next 35 years due to high fertility rates and increasing number of women of reproductive age. Over the same period Africa’sunder-18 population will increase by two thirds, reaching almost 1billion by mid-century.

 

Link: Publication

A comment by The Lancet, on how unprecedented growth in the continent's child population came about, and its implications for Africa and the rest of the world, is the subject of Generation 2030 Africa, a report on child demographics released by UNICEF on Aug 12, 2014.

Link: Publication

This study investigated the integrating possibilities within each creative arts subject. The objective was to optimize the limited teaching time, generally allocated to each art subject in schools, by developing a pedagogical strategy for its successful implementation. While the study was limited to South African schools, the results have global relevance and significance in the ongoing global trendsetting and discourse on arts education. 

Link: Publication

A report from the European Commission to the European Parliament, Council, European economic and social committee and The Committee of Regions. This report highlights key policy strategies which aim to stimulate online content that is useful to children, empower children, protect children while they are online and prevent the sexual abuse and exploitation of children while online. It provides a useful model to ensure child online protection.

 

Link: Publication

This research report prepared by the UK Evidence Base for the UK Council for Child Internet Safety. This piece looks at the risk of harm to children on the internet, children who are most vulnerable while online and children’s general use of the internet. It also looks at best practices by discussing the various strategies used by 600 schools in their e-safety policies.

 

Link: Publication

Risks and safety on the internet: The perspective of European children. Full findings and policy implications from the EU Kids Online survey of 9-16 year olds and their parents in 25 countries. This report presents the full findings from a new and unique survey designed and conducted according to rigorous standards by the EU Kids Online network. The survey investigated key online risks: pornography, bullying, receiving sexual messages, contact with people not known face, to-face, offline meetings with online contacts, potentially harmful user-generated content and personal data misuse. 

Link: Publication

This guide is intended to offer examples of some successful initiatives undertaken by civil society organizations as well as individuals and government agencies concerned with protecting children around the world. 

Link: Publication

The report focuses on the risks faced by children online and policies to protect them. It provides a useful evaluation of existing policies for the protection of children online from different member states of the OECD. 

Link: Publication

A guide for judges and other professionals for effective responses to teen sexting produced by Futures Without Violence.

Link: Publication

"Cell phones and the Internet have helped us connect and learn from each other in ways that most of us never imagined. We have only begun to explore the benefits that these, and future technologies, will bring to our lives. As with many things, it is not the technology, but the misuse of it, that creates problems'' , said Siegel. This article highlights the different type of cyberbullying and gives tips to parents and educators as they play an important role in helping young people understand the consequences of poor decisions in a digital age where favorable, as well as unfavorable, text and images spread exponentially.

Link: Publication

Multiple incidents of violence in South African schools have elevated the issue to being a national concern. The aim of this article is to report on an investigation into the perception of school communities regarding conditions that make violence such a persistent problem in schools. 

Link: Publication

Effective and scalable HIV prevention for adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa is needed. Cash transfers can reduce HIV incidence through reducing risk behaviours. However, questions remain about their effectiveness within national poverty-alleviation programmes, and their effects on different behaviours in boys and girls. 

Peer education has long been seen as a key health promotion strategy and important mechanism to challenge and shift youth behavioural norms, especially for those issues not easily discussed between adults and youth. Over many years of programme implementation, globally and in South Africa, empirical evidence regarding its efficacy has been difficult to obtain. At best peer education programmes have been shown to aid peer educators in a number of important ways but evidence for change in those who take part as peer learners has been elusive.  Fundamentally the study asked what doors do peer education open that are not usually opened in the course of teacher-led educational interventions. This study answers this question by showing how this peer education programme in particular has opened doors regarding increased levels of knowledge and discussion amongst youth, improved measures of self-efficacy regarding sexual decision making and heightened sensitivities amongst young people regarding their need for help and support. 

 
Link: Publication
CJCP-UNICEF publication

Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention (CJCP) in partnership with UNICEF conducted a study exploring young people's perceptions and experiences of online safety, the associated risks, and their preferred strategies for negotiating theses risks. Amongst other recommendations, the publication advocates for policy responses that are driven by evidence-led approaches, and notes that considerable attention should be placed on generating a body of evidence for effective strategies and approaches within South Africa.

The annual report highlights the main accomplishments and results UNICEF achieved in South Africa during 2013, with special features such as infographics and human interest stories. UNICEF’s work is aligned with the South African Government’s Medium-Term Strategic Framework for 2009–2014, including its 12 priority outcomes and the priorities outlined in the National Development Plan. Within this context, UNICEF focuses on reducing inequities, addressing child poverty and promoting children’s rights.

 

The General Household Survey for 2012 showed that 15.8% of all children reported having experienced corporal punishment in school during that year. That amounts to 2.2 million children being hit in South African schools within one year. The Centre for Child Law published a report titled, Promoting effective enforcement of the prohibition against corporal  punishment in South African schools. This report considers the prevalence of corporal punishment in schools, and depicts the forms that it takes through numerous documented examples. Official ambivalence and weak regulatory systems are identified as part of the country-wide problem. Improvements in some provinces are highlighted, and these are linked to deliberate programmatic responses, giving rise to hopes that corporal punishment, if effectively tackled, can ultimately be eradicated. 

The South African Human Rights Commission has released the report of its investigation into the textbook saga that made headlines two years ago. Poor budget management, heavy reliance on private service providers, as well as inadequate procurement management services, are just some of the issues that led to the delays or non-delivery of textbooks in Limpopo and other provinces in 2012. The commission found that most of the departments did not have an accurate record of the number of schools in their province, the medium of instruction or the number of learners in each school.

The report states that there are more than 60 million women and children are in need of humanitarian assistance for the year 2014. Over half of maternal and child deaths worldwide occur in crisis-affected places; still the majority of these deaths are preventable. In this report, Save the Children examines the causes of maternal and child deaths in crisis settings, and suggests urgent actions needed to support mothers who are raising the world’s future generations under some of the most difficult and horrific circumstances imaginable.

The United Nations Convention on Children’s Rights and the subsequent African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child together with the Bill of Children’s Rights and numerous other policies and regulations in many African countries have set the precedent for children’s rights to be respected and implemented across the African Continent. However, little is known about the actual advancement of children’s rights within Sub-Saharan Africa; hence, the purpose of this study was to explore the advancement of children’s rights within an African context.

As a result of the AIDS pandemic, adolescent-headed families are becoming a common trend in South Africa. However, little is known about the experiences of the adolescent, especially within the school context. Hence the purpose of this article was to explore the experiences of adolescents within the school context. The focus is on adolescents from adolescent-headed homes that were displaying resilience in their academic and personal lives despite the odds. Resilience theory and positive psychology assisted  in exploring this topic. Data were collected through individual and focus group interviews with learners and educators. The findings identify specific aspects that are essential to creating resilience to such an extent that they could be positive despite their life situations. 

The report, Sexual Violence by Educators in South African Schools: Gaps in Accountability, is based on interviews conducted in Gauteng Province, South Africa with government officials, nongovernmental organisations, teachers, school administrators, magistrates, police officers, representatives of civil society organisations, and others. This report examines the problems that have contributed to the government’s inability to hold abusive educators responsible for their actions and to protect and provide access to justice for the learners they have abused.

Developed by UNICEF, the UN Global Compact and Save the Children – the Children’s Rights and Business Principles (the Principles) are the first comprehensive set of principles to guide companies on the full range of actions they can take in the workplace, marketplace and community to respect and support children’s rights. While the business and human rights agenda has evolved significantly in recent years, a child rights perspective has not yet been explicitly addressed.

The Mediterranean journal of social sciences published an article entitled, The determinants of child poverty in a South Africa township: a case of Boipatong. The study  investigates the possible determinants of child poverty in the Boipatong Township. 

 The paper discusses the effects of the household’s total income, employment status, age of the household head, the number of people in the household and gender of head of household on child poverty.The results of the study indicate that the employment status of the head of the household; number of people living in the household and total income of the household are significant determinants of child poverty status in Boipatong. This may imply that policies that are aimed at dealing with poverty and child poverty in particular should consider ways of creating formal employment for people in the townships. 

 

Poverty Trends in South Africa report released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) showed a strong link between increased level of education and decreased levels of poverty. However, the report also reveals that most children in South Africa are still living below the poverty line and have seen the least improvement of all the age groups.

A review of South Africa's laws aimed at realising children's rights to assess whether these laws have been designed and are being implemented in compliance with international and constitutional law.

The Centre for Constitutional Rights published its sixth annual Human Rights Report Card indicating where, in their opinion, South Africa has been making progress with regard to human rights and where it has been regressing.

Link: Publication

Crime presents a fundamental challenge in South Africa. Particularly disturbing is the prevalence of violence committed by and against young people. The main purpose of this article is to look at how South Africa should deal with the issue of youth violence. It argues that while structural violence constitutes a significant contextual cause of the phenomenon, a more proximate and specific cause lies in young people’s exposure to direct violence in their schools, homes and communities. This article thus examines the potential merits of restorative justice as a response to the problem of youth violence, focusing particularly on the 2009 Child Justice Act.

Link: Publication

This research sought to investigate the nature, causes and effects of school violence in four South African high schools.The study found that bullying, vandalism, gangsterism, indiscipline, intolerance, and corporal punishment were prevalent in schools. Furthermore, the study found that school violence had the following effects on learners: loss of concentration; poor academic performance; bunking of classes; and depression. The implications of these findings are discussed in detail.

This study analyzes the subjective theories regarding school violence held by six school officials of the city of Coquimbo (Chile). The study's main objective is to identify and interpret the various subjective theories regarding school violence held by the school. The study focuses on six members of the academic advisory board from six different schools, three municipal (public) schools and three subsidized private schools in the region of Coquimbo (Chile). Because the role of the administrative team is becoming increasingly important in the proper functioning of educational institutions, characteristics of school officials such as their leadership skills, negotiation skills, or abilities solve conflicts, have a direct impact on the success or failure of any educational program.

Preparing a lunchbox for school-going children may have significant advantages for their eating behaviour and long-term health prospects, says ZULFA ABRAHAM and her research team, following a study at disadvantaged schools in the Western Cape.

A study on dietary habits of learners from disadvantaged schools in the Western Cape found that lunchboxes play an important role in the nutritional status of school-aged children. Learners who take a lunchbox to school are more likely to consume a diet adequate in nutrients.

Globally, non-communicable diseases are increasingly being recognised as major causes of illness and death, especially in low-income regions such as sub-Saharan Africa. The burden of non-communicable diseases is growing in South Africa, where a mix of over-nutrition and under-nutrition is found. This has resulted in nutrition-related conditions existing in primary schools. 

Link: Publication

This report summarises two specially commissioned CDE reports, both independent studies of the state of schooling in South Africa as of early 2013, done by university-based experts Nicholas Spaull and Charles Simkins.

South Africa is significantly underperforming in education, particularly mathematics teaching and learning. Fundamental reforms are needed in the public sector. Business leaders need to incorporate an understanding of private education and other market experiments and schooling innovations in their overall perspective and priorities for intervention and reform.

Essential services for young children are foregrounded in this year’s issue of the South African Child Gauge. This annual review of South Africa’s children, now in its eighth year, was published in collaboration with UNICEF South Africa and Ilifa Labantwana.

The 2013 issue highlights the importance of investing early to ensure the optimum development of young children, and defines an essential package of care and support services for young children and their families. In particular, essays explore key service areas including nutrition, maternal and child health, caregiver support, parenting programmes, early learning opportunities and early schooling. The book is accompanied by a policy brief and pull-out poster. 

The policy brief,Stepping up to the challenge:Prioritising essential services for young children, draws on the latest research findings, presented in the 2013 South African Child Gauge, and identifies critical next steps to enhance the delivery of essential services for young children. 

Link: Report
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Primary school enrollment rates have risen dramatically over the past 15 years, but, those gains have been uneven and learning levels remain unacceptably low. Poor quality education is jeopardizing the future of millions of children and youth around the world. Yet we do not know the full scale of the crisis because measurement of learning outcomes is limited in many countries, and hence difficult to assess at the international level. Read More

The Department of Performance Monitoring and Evaluation in the Presidency (DPME) and the Inter-Departmental Steering Committee on Early Childhood Development commissioned a Diagnostic Review (DR) of the Early Childhood Development (ECD) sector in October 2011. The purpose of the DR was to evaluate the current South African ECD paradigm and policy, including the role of the State, and the implementation of ECD services and programmes. The diagnostic review summarizes the policy on ECD and key policy findings amongst other issues.

Link: Report
Report

A new report on Education in the Post-2015 Development Agenda has been launched as an outcome of the Global Thematic Consultation.The report offers a summary of the main themes and messages that have emerged from an inclusive and wide-ranging consultation process on education around the world. The thematic consultation was co-led by UNICEF and UNESCO, with support from the Governments of Canada, Germany and Senegal and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. READ MORE

Link: Report
Hidden Exclusion Cover

The last decade has witnessed enormous progress in expanding access to education worldwide. The job is not yet finished: 61 million primary school aged children are still denied the opportunity to learn. But as we continue to make progress and look ahead to 2015 and beyond, it is vital to shine a light on the ‘hidden exclusion’ affecting children’s education around the world.

This report discusses issues relating to education and equality, how the post 2015 development framework should be adapted to cater for challenges experienced in the past. The paper also looks at how education is changing and the inevitable need for a new approach to education.

Link: Report
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The 2011 Global Monitoring Report examines the damaging consequences of conflict for the Education for All goals. It sets out an agenda for protecting the right to education during conflict, strengthening provision for children, youth and adults affected by conflict, and rebuilding education systems in countries emerging from conflict.

The Report also explores the role of inappropriate education policies in creating conditions for violent conflict. Drawing on experience from a range of countries, it identifies problems and sets out solutions that can help make education a force for peace, social cohesion and human dignity.

Link: Report
Child malnutrition

This report displays new findings on the impact of malnutrition on children's learning abilities.  Report shows that child mortality has decreased and the number of children in schools has increased, these are good developments that are under threat. The long term consequences of malnutrition in relation to health and education of children are explored.

This article examines the association between minimum age of employment and secondary school enrolment.

Article can be found in 'International Journal of Educational Research. 2013; 60: 38–45'

This report highlights global governments’ failure to support family-friendly policies and calls for new measures to enable the world’s children to thrive, not merely survive.

This new report, launched by the World Policy Analysis Centre, contains never-before-available comparative data on laws and public policies in 191 countries covering poverty, discrimination, education, health, child labour, child marriage and parental care. Changing Children’s Chances reveals how millions of children across the world face conditions that limit their opportunities to thrive and reach their full potential.

Children with disabilities

Each year, UNICEF’s flagship publication, The State of the World's Children, closely examines a key issue affecting children. 2013 focuses the attention on children with disabilities. Their many vulnerabilities are explored and highlighted and the report advocates for equity for these children through inclusion. Extensive recommendations are given.

This CAI paper explores the dangers of child labour in the context of extractive industries and provides an overview of the international legal framework. Child labour remains too much a part of multinational business supply chains, and this paper argues for entrenching legally binding prohibitions regarding businesses and their duty of due diligence regarding child labour.

Factors shaping education

School education is held up as an ‘escape route from poverty’. This paper looks at children’s unequal trajectories from early childhood through to the time they leave school, examining how various factors are shaping their educational opportunities and achievement.

Schooling and Skills Development

Young Lives collected data since 2002 on two cohorts of children born in 1994-95 and 2000-01 across 80 sites in four developing countries. This paper employs these data to examine the development of general cognitive skills and of basic literacy and numeracy over the child’s life course and school career.

Improving children's life chances is central to what the MDGs were seeking to achieve. There is some consensus that the MDGs have achieved progress but with the target date of 2015 fast approaching there are questions about how equitably gains in education, health and living conditions have been distributed. A focus on children is essential, CONTINUE

Link: Publication

Do conditions imposed by Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs) influence the outcomes they seek to improve? This paper presents the results of a randomized experiment in rural Burkina Faso to estimate the impact of conditional and unconditional cash transfers on education. The study of the two-year pilot programme found that unconditional and conditional cash transfers had a similar impact in increasing the school enrolment of children who are traditionally favoured by parents for school participation. However, the conditional transfers were significantly more effective in improving the enrolment of ‘marginal’ children, such as girls, younger children, and lower ability children.In addition, CCTs were estimated to be more cost-effective than unconditional transfers in improving enrolment.CONTINUE READING

Link: Publication

With fewer than three years until the planned end-date of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), attention is rapidly turning to what will follow. The elaboration of the next global development agenda is a complex, multi-pronged process that is academic, political and practical, involving experts from a myriad of social and economic sectors and representing a cross-section of constituencies. While the formal U.N. process is still in the early stages, the ongoing discourse (predominantly occurring in the global north, but not exclusively) has introduced several potential frameworks for this agenda.

This paper describes the leading frameworks proposed for the post-2015 global development agenda and discusses how education and learning fit within each of those frameworks. READ MORE

All countries in the world acknowledge the universality of the right to education and South Africa (SA) is no exception. According to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) as Resolution 44/25 of 20 November 1989,(2) every child has a right to free and compulsory basic education. How successful has SA been in ensuring the realisation of this right? Does the legal, political, economic and social environment in the country promote or constrain this right? Above all, based on what is currently happening in the country, can it be convincingly concluded that the state is committed to the fulfilment of this right for every child? This CAI paper looks at the current South African education environment and examines if such an environment promotes or constrains the realisation of the right to education. CONTINUE READING

Violence in South African schools has garnered considerable media attention in South Africa in recent years. In the past year alone, local media coverage of brazenly violent acts – which have at times proven fatal – have again fuelled public opinion that school violence in South Africa is escalating at an alarming rate and that something needs to be done about it.

The Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention conducted a study on School violence in South Africa. The 2012 study comes four years after the first sweep of the study, which was conceptualised to provide empirical data on the true nature and extent of violence in South African schools. Read More

Link: HSRC

Conceptualizing father presence or absence in discreet terms masks the fluidity of men's involvement with children. It is necessary, in the case of African contexts, to understand the determinants of male presence or involvement, the nature of benefits that accrue to both, and the circumstances that allow these benefits to fully materialize. This chapter reviews fathers' roles and presence through the early years of children's lives in southern Africa. It draws on the available scholarship on men and masculinity in southern Africa to outline the determinants of male involvement, including the role of social, economic, and historical dynamics in shaping the lives of men and their functioning as fathers.

If you would like to obtain a copy of this Research Output, please contact Hanlie Rossinger at [email protected].

Publication was sourced from www.hsrc.ac.za

This report presents the contemporary global context and charts a path for policymakers and citizens to navigate the increasing interconnec tedness of the world and to face the growing global challenges. It describes how the dynamics of power, voice and wealth in the world are changing and identifies new policies and institutions necessary to address these 21st century realities and promote human development with greater equity, sustainability and social integration. Identifies reforms necessary at both global and national level with an emphasis on building social cohesion, the need for state commitment to education, health and social protection, and openness to trade integration emerge as means of navigating towards sustainable and equitable human development.

"Independent institutions bring an explicit children’s focus to traditional adult-oriented governance systems. Acting as direct mechanisms for accountability, they fill gaps in checks and balances and make sure that the impact of policy and practice on children’s rights is understood and recognized. At a time of global economic uncertainty, a period in which inequities between rich and poor are widening, and a period of reflection on progress towards achieving the Millenium Development Goals and in defining what sustainable and equitable goals should come after, these institutions are key players in promoting systems that are effective in delivering results for children."

 

The present report is submitted pursuant to Human Rights Council resolutions 8/4 and 17/3. It is devoted to technical and vocational education and training from a right to education perspective. It highlights international obligations as well as political commitments to promote technical and vocational education and training. The report analyses norms and standards developed through international instruments, and underlines the importance of national-level normative action to maximize the contribution of technical and vocational education and training to empowerment and social and economic development.The Special Rapporteur stresses specific characteristics of technical and vocational education and training as a right, and analyses evolving national legal and policy frameworks. He underlines the need to ensure quality in such education and training and the responsibilities of various stakeholders involved in its implementation. The report also addresses the importance of technical and vocational education and training in the post-2015 “Education for All” and development agendas and concludes with a set of recommendations.

This report presents the work of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) undertaken from August 2011 to July 2012, illustrating the implementation of the six thematic priorities of the Office as defined in its management plans for 2010-2011 and 2012-2013. The six areas are: Strengthening of human rights mechanisms and the progressive development of international human rights law; Countering discrimination, in particular racial discrimination, discrimination on the grounds of sex or religion and discrimination against others who are marginalized; Pursuing economic, social and cultural rights and combating inequalities and poverty, including in the context of the economic, food and climate crises; Human rights in the context of migration; Combating impunity and strengthening accountability, the rule of law and democratic society and Protecting human rights in situations of armed conflict, violence and insecurity. The report shows that while determined to undertake these challenges, the Office of the High Commissioner needs adequate political and financial support if it is to fulfil its mandate in a timely and meaningful manner,with a view to contributing effectively to the protection of human rights everywhere.

This report provides a summation of factors contributing to youth unemployment and calls for the development of a multi-pronged strategy to address these issues. It provides for a process to develop such strategies. In addition it canvasses the motivations for a youth-unemployment subsidy and lays out the design, implementation process and cost of the potential subsidy. Finally, it proposes a way forward and calls for submissions in this regard.

This report provides an analysis of the edcuation and unemployment climate in Africa. It highlights the challenges faced by young African people, the factors contributing to disparities, the economic circumstnces surrounding the current situation, the need to create an enabling environment for employment and education of youth and numerous other factors.

This report presents a regional overview of accountability and transparency in primary education management in seven African countries. It has been produced within the framework of Africa Education Watch (AEW). AEW is a three year programme (2007-2010) implemented by Transparency International (TI) that focuses on governance in the management of public funds in the primary education system.

This report presents the results of a study in three components. First, it provides a context for understanding the current interest in educational equity through a review of the evolution of international concerns about equity and previous efforts to define and measure equity more systematically. Second, it presents a framework for measuring educational equity, along with methods for comparing the equity of countries’ education systems using a set of standard statistical measures. Finally, it demonstrates the application of the framework in 16 of the largest, most-populous countries around the world. These include three countries in Africa (Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa), five in Asia (Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia and Pakistan), five in Latin America (Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru), along with Canada, the Russian Federation and the United States.

Focuses on analysing the experiences of 20 school systems from all parts of the globe that have achieved significant, sustained, and widespread gains, as measured by national and international standards of assessment. The Appendix describes system selection criteria, as well as the database structure for the detailed evidence gathered to map the experiences of nearly 575 reform interventions made across the school systems in the research sample. The purpose in this work has been to understand precisely which interventions occurred in each school system and when, and how these interventions interacted with each other and with the system’s broader context to deliver better outcomes for students.

This report analyses the improvements to children’s lives during the past two decades in five sectors: health, nutrition, water and sanitation, education and child protection. It is a clear demonstration that, when the right steps and approaches are taken, ‘development works’. Building on this evidence, this report makes a powerful case for greater investment in ‘child sensitive’ development. It sets out the drivers of change and the key steps to achieving progress.

This report reflects an analysis of key indicators to assess the fulfillment of children’s rights in South Africa. Most of the data is derived from Statistics South Africa’s General Household Survey (GHS), a household survey representative for the entire population of the country. It has been executed annually by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) since 2002. It covers six broad areas, namely: education, health, social development, housing, household access to services and facilities, food security and agriculture.

This report is a first attempt to generate data of this nature, to map child deprivation at municipal level, in order to inform local level policy and intervention in South Africa. Making use of information available from the 2001 Census about different aspects of deprivation, such as income, employment, education, health and living environment, the authors have combined these domains to form an overall index of multiple deprivations. The model which emerges is of a series of uni-dimensional domains of deprivation which can be combined, with appropriate weighting, into a single child-focused measure of multiple deprivations.

This is an annual report mapping the world's progress in reaching eight targets known as the Millennium Development Goals. These are to: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger; achieve universal primary education; Promote gender equality and empower women; Reduce child mortality; Improve maternal health; Combat HIV and AIDS, malaria and other diseases; Ensure environmental sustainability, and, Develop a Global Partnership for Development

This is a report published annually. Each year, it has a different theme. 2012's report canvasses the situation of children living in urban areas. Within the report such children's rights and the challenges associated with their realisation are discussed. The document is also a source of statistics on this matter and includes the perspectives of various differently-situated writers.

Summarises some of the main findings from a research project undertaken by the Social Policy Research Group in the Department of Economics at Stellenbosch University.

The KidsRights Index is the annual global index which ranks how countries adhere to and are equipped to improve children’s rights. The KidsRights Index is an initiative of the KidsRights Foundation, in cooperation with Erasmus University Rotterdam: Erasmus School of Economics and the International Institute of Social Studies. It comprises a ranking for all UN member states that have ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and for which sufficient data is available, a total of 165 countries. The KidsRights Index exists of 5 domains:1. Right to Life, 2. Right to Health 3. Right to Education 4. Right to Protection, and, 5. Enabling Environment for Child Rights. Also available at the above link are a report, infographic and news coverage.

For a brief overview of this report please go to Association for Women's Right in Development here

The South African Child Gauge is published annually by the Children’s Institute, University of Cape, to monitor government and civil society’s progress towards realising children’s rights. This issue focuses on children and inequality.It was launched on the 17th October 2012.This document is divided into three parts:

PART ONE: Children and law reform Part one discusses recent legislative developments affecting children. This issue comments on litigation and law reform in relation to the Children’s Act; the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act; the Social Assistance Act regulations; the National Health Act; and the Traditional Courts Bill. See pages 14 – 19.

PART TWO: Children and inequality: Closing the gap Part two presents 10 essays – the first four essays set the scene by defining children’s equality rights and explaining the nature and extend of inequality, the spatial dimensions of child deprivation in South Africa, and the impact of place, care and migration on children’s lives. The following five essays outline the potential of particular policies and programmes to reduce inequalities amongst South Africa’s children, including social grants, early childhood development services, access to health care, HIV treatment and prevention services, and access to quality education. The final essay reflects on emerging opportunities and challenges, and critical considerations for policy. See pages 22 – 77.

PART THREE: Children Count – the numbers Part three updates a set of key indicators on children’s socio-economic rights and provides commentary on the extent to which these rights have been realised. The indicators are a special subset selected from the website www.childrencount.ci.org.za. See pages 80 – 105.

This is one of the most definative and widely utilised South African child rights documents, providing a concise and focused synopsis of the situation of children throughout the country.

In commemoration of Universal Children’s Day on 20 November 2015, the HSRC convened this forum to reflect on the South Africa’s progress in the realization of the MDG’s over the past 15 years and importantly to assess the opportunities and challenges that the SDG agenda provides in the fulfillment of the rights of children and making this a world fit for children. A panel of researchers led a discussion on South Africa’s progress in realization of the MDGs and to help us consider what South Africa must do and how to intensify efforts to strengthen the links between SDGs and children’s rights. Presentations can be downloaded above.

Some of the world’s authorities on child poverty, development and wellbeing will gather in Cape Town this week, 2-4 September, for a conference that will reveal new directions and approaches to research that can improve social policy and services for children.

This is the first time the biennial conference of the International Society for Child Indicators will be held in Africa, and it provides an important opportunity to shift the focus of discussions to the global south.

The conference will include papers, panel sessions and discussions on a range of issues affecting children, including the following:

  • Youth transitions to adulthood
  • Early childhood development
  • Child-focused indicators of social change
  • Measurement of child poverty and inequality
  • Child protection and violence against children

Over 200 researchers, policy-makers and practitioners will attend from more than 40 countries. These experts are concerned with the measurement of children’s deprivation and development – and the translation of evidence into policy and practice. They are brought together by a common vision of a world in which children have equal opportunities and the potential to thrive and develop. The conference is about providing evidence that points the way forward to address inequality and improve children’s life chances, whether children grow up in Germany, Chile, South Africa or Indonesia.

Previously held in Chicago, Sydney, York and Seoul, this year’s conference will be hosted by the Children’s Institute, University of Cape Town, in partnership with UNICEF, the African Child Policy Forum, and the Poverty & Inequality Initiative of UCT.

Venue: Kramer Law Building, Middle Campus, University of Cape Town. Dates: 2-4 September 2015.

For more information, profiles of the keynote speakers and a detailed programme go to www.isci2015.org or Facebook at ISCI 2015.

THere will be brief outlines of a few key sessions available for distribution on Monday 31 August.

Please contact [email protected] if you would like to receive these.

REMINDER of Youth Day seminar today at 12h30.

In the context of Youth Month this seminar asks how youth activism has changed over the past 39 years since the student uprising that began in Soweto in 1976 – over (ostensibly) the issue of the medium of instruction in schools for black youth. Today we ask youth activists from three universities in South Africa to reflect on their experiences on education and transformation. The call to transform South Africa’s academic institutions is on the rise country wide in the wake of the Rhodes Must Fall movement. The transformation agenda is engendering a new form of youth educational activism that is focusing on issues, inter alia, curriculum reform; demographic diversity within the academy; institutional culture and institutional naming. The seminar seeks to engage the voices of students on these and other pertinent issues related to education and transformation in post-apartheid South Africa.

A notice from the Department of Social Development, the Child rights sector Indaba has been postponed until further notice. The department remains committed to engage with the sector. Kindly accept our sincere apologies for any inconvenience  that this may have caused.

The Department of Science and Technology (DST), Department of Basic Education, the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC), hosted a Policy Dialogue on Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in Education in South Africa. In line with global trends South Africa has grown increasingly reliant on information and communication technologies (ICTs) to provide access to information and services. Over the last decade South Africa has witnessed increased investments in this sector by both public and private investors, reaching to 70th place out of 144 countries in Africa on the World Economic Forum’s Global Information Technology Report rankings of 2013. These investments have led to increased use of ICT services across all sectors of the economy, prompting government to intervene with policy instruments to govern and guide the further penetration of ICTs in the country. The recently approved Broadband Policy reflects this commitment to creating an enabling environment, not only for the rollout of broadband infrastructure but also for associated content, applications and services as well.

Attached are presentations from the Policy Dialogue, and reports will be circulated once they have been made available

Document(s): Office presentation icon Mastoera Sadan [email protected] years an overview of child related policy development.pps, PDF icon Executive summary Mastoera Sadan [email protected] years an overview of child related policy development.pdf, PDF icon [email protected] years Report.pdf, PDF icon Children @ 20 years Summary.pdf

On the 16 May 2014 PAN: Children invited Mastoera Sadan from the Presidency to discuss the development of child related policy through a 20-year lens, elaborating on how far we have come and commenting on the future of child policy in South Africa. Ms. Sadan was involved in the development of the Twenty Year Review. The Review reflects on how South Africa has progressed since the dawn of democracy in 1994, the challenges it still faces and how these can best be addressed. It provides an evaluation of the policies instituted by government since the advent of democracy. While highlighting achievements, it also addresses shortcomings and looks at initiatives and operational plans for the future.

 

On the 14th and 15th of November 2012 The Centre for Child Law, Section27, Equal Education and Centre for Applied Legal Studies, organized and hosted an Education Conference.

The aim of the conference was to analyse the outcomes of litigation, implementation of policy and law reform as well as to facilitate dialogue with other actors in order to address the difficulties in the realization of the right to education. READ MORE

Presentations from workshop hosted by the Legal Resources Centre, Section27, Equal Education Law Centre, Centre for Child Law and Centre for Applied Legal Studies on 14 and 15 November 2012.

A series of articles captioning presentations made at the Carnegie III Conference, Capetown. Speakers include Sibongile Zenzile, Raymond Auerbach, Dunstan Mlambo, David Sanders, John Perlman, Crick Lund, Zetu Matebeni, Rick de Satge and Ingrid Woolard. The Carnegie Conference, in brief, has the following purpose: "To focus attention on understanding the lived experiences of inequality and the causes and dimensions of persistent inequality, and will consider policies and actions that are aimed at significantly reducing inequality and poverty in both the short- and long-term. This is a challenge that involves all South Africans, organised in many different ways. Taking seriously the President’s call for a ‘national dialogue’ about the future, and acknowledging the mandate of tertiary institutions to engage in socially responsive research, the purpose of the conference is to provide a platform for sharing and debate amongst academic researchers, government and practitioners. The conference will seek to move towards new ways of considering poverty and inequality, focusing less on describing the problems, and more on practical strategies to overcome them. This requires shifts in thinking, which the conference hopes to stimulate by combining a focus on academic and applied research with a set of demonstrations from the NGO, Business and Trade Union world." www.carnegie3.org. For Further Information, please see the Carnegie III online platform: http://www.carnegie3.org.za/about

A series of articles captioning presentations made at the Carnegie III Conference, Capetown. Speakers include Mary Metcalfe, Bovain Mcnab, Dorrit Posel, Michele Hay, David Neves, Ruth Hall, Edwin Arrison, Linda Stewart and Lebogang Ramafoko. The Carnegie Conference, in brief, has the following purpose:"To focus attention on understanding the lived experiences of inequality and the causes and dimensions of persistent inequality, and will consider policies and actions that are aimed at significantly reducing inequality and poverty in both the short- and long-term. This is a challenge that involves all South Africans, organised in many different ways. Taking seriously the President’s call for a ‘national dialogue’ about the future, and acknowledging the mandate of tertiary institutions to engage in socially responsive research, the purpose of the conference is to provide a platform for sharing and debate amongst academic researchers, government and practitioners. We look forward to welcoming participants from universities and NGOs; from Government at national, provincial and local levels; from trade unions, faith-based organisations and the business sector. The conference will seek to move towards new ways of considering poverty and inequality, focusing less on describing the problems, and more on practical strategies to overcome them. This requires shifts in thinking, which the conference hopes to stimulate by combining a focus on academic and applied research with a set of demonstrations from the NGO, Business and Trade Union world." www.carnegie3.org. For Further Information, please see the Carnegie III online platform: http://www.carnegie3.org.za/about

A series of articles highlighting the opening of the Carnegie III Conference, Cape Town. It includes details of the opening address presented by Dr Mamphela Ramphele and presentations by Trevor Manuel, Max Price, Kate O'Regan, Frederick Fourie, Paul Cichello, Kuben Naidoo, Andrew Charman, Natasha Mayet, Neil Coleman, Ben Cousins and Francis Wilson. The Carnegie Conference, in brief, has the following purpose:"To focus attention on understanding the lived experiences of inequality and the causes and dimensions of persistent inequality, and will consider policies and actions that are aimed at significantly reducing inequality and poverty in both the short- and long-term. This is a challenge that involves all South Africans, organised in many different ways.Taking seriously the President’s call for a ‘national dialogue’ about the future, and acknowledging the mandate of tertiary institutions to engage in socially responsive research, the purpose of the conference is to provide a platform for sharing and debate amongst academic researchers, government and practitioners. We look forward to welcoming participants from universities and NGOs; from Government at national, provincial and local levels; from trade unions, faith-based organisations and the business sector.The conference will seek to move towards new ways of considering poverty and inequality, focusing less on describing the problems, and more on practical strategies to overcome them. This requires shifts in thinking, which the conference hopes to stimulate by combining a focus on academic and applied research with a set of demonstrations from the NGO, Business and Trade Union world." (www.carnegie3.org)For Further Information, please see the Carnegie III online platform: http://www.carnegie3.org.za/about

 

This workshop report compiled by The Centre for Development and Enterprise is the result of a workshop attended by international and local experts on private schools in low-income communities. Building on experience in other developing countries, the report contains many practical suggestions on how to support low fee private schools in poorer communities.

Link: Details

The theme selected by the African Committee for the celebration of the DAC in 2017 is “The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development for children in Africa: Accelerating protection, empowerment, and equal opportunity”. DAC was instituted in 1991 by the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the then OAU instituted in memory of the 16th June 1976 student uprising in Soweto, South Africa. In selecting the theme for the 2017 DAC celebration, the Committee is reconfirming the importance of linking the 2030 Agenda with child rights. It is emphasizing that with a view to increase accountability, strengthen coherence and alignment among various stakeholders, prevent inequitable outcomes, and invest in all children, and to stress that the child rights commitments of States need to be made central to the implementation of SDGs. In addition, the Committee, as a treaty body, is seeking to draw attention to the fact that, the so called “priority SDG targets and indicators for children” should be brought closer to the African Charter reporting cycle.

Link: Publication

This book features two delightful eight-year olds living in Africa: a girl called Kayla and a boy called Kendi. Kendi is living with HIV, but seems as happy as any other child. The story focuses on their carefree life at school, at home and in the countryside. It comes with a guide which is used to help people understand HIV among children and especially to understand that children bounce back and do well when on treatment. HIV-positive children can go to school, play and live like any other children. They, and their families, need care and support, not stigma and discrimination. For parents, caregivers, teachers and health-care providers: if a child has acquired HIV, you can take comfort in knowing that there is hope. Treatment is now available and it means that children can survive and thrive. There are many adults alive today who became infected with HIV at birth and have grown into adulthood. People living with HIV can enjoy a better quality of life because of new HIV medicines, better care and more support.

Link: Publication

This document reports the findings of a Workshop organised by UNICEF UK in London, UK, about social accountability for Children. Read Background documents HERE  

Link: Publication
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This advocacy brief by Save the Children emphasises the importance of Early Childhood Care (ECCD) as a foundation for child survival. The brief revisits the global ECCD goals,discusses child equity, equitable approaches to ECCD, why ECCD is such a powerful form of government investment as well as the benefits for children's education and development. A framework for re-conceptualising early childhood policies and programs is provided together with an impact evaluation in Africa.

Link: Econ3x3

Econ3x3 is an independent forum for critical public debate on unemployment and employment, income distri­bution and inclu­sive growth in South Africa. It publishes accessible research- based contribu­tions and expert commentaries. The forum encourages debate on an inte­grated and consistent policy response to unemployment, inequality and poverty and a stronger engagement between research and policy making. Econ3x3 invites contributions from economists and other social science researchers, policymakers and relevant experts.

The Citizens Movement was established by senior leaders from politics, academia, business and civil society, under the leadership of founder Dr Mamphela Ramphele, with the aim of building an engaged and active citizenry by building momentum around key areas that affect South African society. The Citizens Movement will:

  • Develop a portal of information that any citizen can access and contribute to
  • Use tools available through social and digital media platforms for face to face engagement that will raise the profile of issues with decision makers and citizens 
  • Provide co-ordinated campaigns for dialogue, direct engagement and peaceful action through an integrated approach using TV, radio, print, website, polls, surveys, mobi and smses.
Link: Publication

The Committee recognizes that children face many violations of their rights under the African Children’s Charter when their parents and/or primary caregivers come into conflict with the law. Through its consideration of States Parties’ Reports, and other activities falling within its mandate, the African committee has become aware that children can be affected by both the stigma of their parent or primary caregiver’s involvement with the criminal justice system as well as by the trauma of separation caused by arrest, pre-trial detention and imprisonment. In recognition of the importance and invisibility of the issue of children affected by the incarceration of their parents/ primary caregivers, the African Committee decided to prepare its first General Comment on this issue  - More

Document(s): PDF icon NPAC.pdf

The National Plan of Action for Children (NPAC) 2012 -2017 has been developed to embrace the new legislation and legal instruments for children, which have been adopted at local, regional as well as international levels. The NPAC focuses on 'The Child' as the central point of departure. There are five sub-themes of the NPAC: these were child survival, child development, protection and care for children, standard of living of children in South Africa, and child participation. Existing governmental goals that were contributing towards the achievement of mandates focusing on children had been used as benchmarks to inform Government programmes.

Consolidation of the State of the Nation and State of the Province addresses prepared by André Viviers, Senior Social Policy Specialist, UNICEF South Africa.

On Wednesday the 26th September 2012, the Secretary-General of the United National launched "Education First", the details of which PAN: Children has captured at the following link: http://children.pan.org.za/node/9090. President Jacob Zuma was among the world leaders to make an address at the event. This is a link to his remarks at the launch.

South Africa’s education system is beset by a multitude of problems, and prominent amongst them is the government’s inability to provide the necessary learning materials on time. The 2012 textbook saga not only highlighted the inefficiency of textbook distribution, but also the high cost of printing and transporting the material to more than 23 000 public schools.

This paper will focus on some alternatives to the traditional printed textbooks that may offer a solution to the challenges regarding shortages and delivery of textbooks.

 

A 74-page literature review of what works in supporting children and young people to overcome persistent poverty. The  review was initially commissioned to explore the questions:

  • What works in supporting children and young people to break the intergenerational poverty cycle?
  • What factors and interventions might work to help poor children achieve a positive outcome in adulthood?
  • What factors enable some children born into poverty to ‘buck the trend’ in terms of their predicted life trajectories?
  • What strategies and practices can support the development of resilience among poor children and young people?

The right to education for children aged 5-18 years is one in a series of topical guides developed for PAN:Children that provides key information on the current state of affairs in South Africa related to  access to quality education. It highlights practical guidance, lessons learned and case studies (both national and international) that will be helpful in policy development dialogue and knowledge sharing.