UNICEF, MoE emphasize human rights based approach [Archives:2006/950/Local News]

May 29 2006

Hamdan Dammag
SANA'A, May 27 ) UNICEF and the Yemen Ministry of Education (MoE) reaffirmed their commitment to working constructively together in order to make substantive improvements in the quality and accessibility of children's education in Yemen in a meeting on May 26. The meeting came in the context of the impending departure of Ramesh Shrestha, UNICEF Representative in Yemen.

Profound revision of the current curriculum, including changes in text books that will stress a human rights-based approach to education, are part of an important initiative that UNICEF will implement in partnership with the MoE. The human rights based approach emphasizes children's rights to expression, to classroom and school participation, and to a quality education. This new initiative is the result of earlier work undertaken by the MoE and UNICEF that introduced innovative improvements in order to enhance the quality of education.

Mr. Shrestha said that there remains much work to be done to improve education in Yemen, particularly in the area of girls' education. He noted that according to government estimates 70% of school-aged Yemeni girls nationawide are not attending school.

“Working together, UNICEF and the Ministry of Education have continued to develop a strong and positive working relationship that has allowed UNICEF-Yemen to make lasting and positive impacts for the children of Yemen,” said Shrestha.

Shrestha, who is leaving Yemen to become the UNICEF Representative in Myanmar, added “It has been a very interesting and rewarding experience for me to have worked with the Ministry of Education in Yemen.”

“I know that our past success in advancing education in Yemen will pave the way for even greater results in the future,” Shrestha noted.

UNICEF, in partnership with other organizations, continues to support the efforts of the MoE to reduce the gender enrollment gap by raising community awareness of the importance and value of female schooling. The MoE has implemented this policy by providing more female teachers in rural areas, by constructing and improving school facilities, and by improving school curriculum.