International Day to Protect Education from Attack: Safeguarding the Right to Learn

The United Nations General Assembly’s Resolution 74/275, adopted on May 28, 2020, designates September 9 as the International Day to Protect Education from Attack. This significant international observance aims to draw attention to the escalating threats against schools and educational institutions worldwide. These threats manifest in various forms, from shelling and bombings to occupation and the recruitment of children in armed conflicts.

The day underscores the critical importance of safeguarding the right to education, a fundamental human right enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and various international treaties. Tragically, this right is frequently violated during times of armed conflict, depriving countless children of their educational opportunities.

The International Day to Protect Education from Attack also serves as a clarion call to action. It urges the international community to take proactive measures to shield schools and educational institutions from harm. Attacks on education have far-reaching consequences, disrupting the learning process, increasing dropout rates, and causing physical and psychological harm, even fatalities.

In addition to its sobering message, this day offers an occasion to celebrate the indomitable spirit of children and educators who persevere in their pursuit of knowledge despite perilous circumstances. Many continue to attend school amidst the turmoil of armed conflicts, exemplifying the transformative power of education.

UNESCO and UNICEF have been designated as co-facilitators for the annual observance of the International Day to Protect Education from Attack, emphasizing the global commitment to this vital cause. Stakeholders worldwide are urged to prioritize this issue and take meaningful steps to alleviate the hardships faced by students affected by armed conflicts.

This international day serves as an annual platform for advocacy and mobilization, aiming to protect education and promote sustainable peace for all. It underscores the unwavering dedication to defending the right to learn, even in the most challenging circumstances.