Thursday, 15 July 2010

International Civic and Citizenship Education Study (ICSS) - Report on initial findings

International Civic and Citizenship Education Study
The 2009 IEA study of civic and citizenship education (ICCS) investigated the ways in which young people are prepared to undertake their roles as citizens in modern societies. It reports on student knowledge and understanding of civics and citizenship as well as student attitudes, perceptions and activities related to civics and citizenship.

The report from ICCS is based on data from more than 140,000 students in more than 5,000 schools from 38 countries. These data are augmented by data from more than 62,000 teachers in those schools and further contextual data collected from school principals and national research centers.

-->get the Initial Findings for download.

The report is an important reference document for EDC/HRE, but once again shows the urgency to go for more reseach in the field of non-formsal educational settings.

Tackling Poverty and Social Exclusion: Textbook for NGO practitioners published online

The conference "Tackling Poverty and Social Exclusion in Europe through Education for Democratic Citizenship / Human Rights Education” was jointly organised by BEMIS (Black and Ethnic Minorities Infrastructure in Scotland) and DARE (Democracy and Human Rights Education in Adult Learning). More than 170 participants gathered in Glasgow (March 3-5, 2010) for exchange and discussions.

The conference textbook is now published online, offering a selection of case studies, best practices and research reports throughout Europe. Special emphasis was put on case studies from Scottish local communities, in order to explore the link between local initiatives and European issues and vice versa.

Download the full textbook here!

Monday, 12 July 2010

Tackling Poverty - Scottish Government takes on DARE´s policy recommendations


The Scottish Government took on DARE´s policy recommendations on tackling poverty and social exclusion and subsequently published a learning point on Democratic Citizenship and Poverty. This is a good reference point for DARE´s impact on the relevant national/regional level of policy making.

Get the document as pdf:
http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Built-Environment/regeneration/pir/learningnetworks/cr/publications/LearningPoint70Citizenpdf

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

European Commission and Council of Europe kick off joint talks on EU's accession to the Convention on Human Rights

Strasbourg, 07.07.2010 - Official talks started today on the European Union's accession to the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR). Thorbjørn Jagland, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, and Viviane Reding, Vice-President of the European Commission, marked the beginning of this joint process at a meeting in Strasbourg. They discussed how to move the process forward so that citizens can swiftly benefit from stronger and more coherent fundamental rights protection in Europe.

“Today is a truly historic moment. We are now putting in place the missing link in Europe's system of fundamental rights protection, guaranteeing coherence between the approaches of the Council of Europe and the European Union," said Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU's Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship. "The EU has an important role to play in further strengthening the Convention's system of fundamental rights. We already have our own Charter of Fundamental Rights, which represents the most modern codification of fundamental rights in the world. This is a very good precondition for a successful meeting of the minds between the negotiation partners."

“The European Convention on Human Rights is the essential reference for human rights protection for all of Europe. By accepting to submit the work of its institutions to the same human rights rules and the same scrutiny which apply to all European democracies, the European Union is sending a very powerful message – that Europe is changing – and that the most influential and the most powerful are ready to accept their part of responsibility for that change and in that change,” said Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe.

The EU's accession to the ECHR will place the EU on the same footing as its Member States with regard to the system of fundamental rights protection supervised by the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. It will allow for the EU's voice to be heard when cases come before the Strasbourg Court. With accession, the EU would become the 48th signatory of the ECHR. The EU would have its own judge at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Accession will also provide a new possibility of remedies for individuals. They will be able to bring complaints – after they have exhausted domestic remedies – about the alleged violation of fundamental rights by the EU before the European Court of Human Rights.

Background


The EU’s accession to the ECHR is required under Article 6 of the Lisbon Treaty and foreseen by Article 59 of the ECHR as amended by the Protocol 14.

On 17 March, the Commission proposed negotiation Directives for the EU's accession to the ECHR (IP/10/291). On 4 June, EU Justice Ministers gave the Commission the mandate to conduct the negotiations on their behalf. On 26 May, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe gave an ad-hoc mandate to its Steering Committee for Human Rights to elaborate with the EU the necessary legal instrument for the EU’s accession to the ECHR.

Next steps

As of today, negotiators from the Commission and experts from the Council of Europe’s Steering Committee for Human Rights will meet regularly to work on the accession agreement. At the end of the process, the agreement on accession shall be concluded by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe and unanimously by the Council of the EU. The European Parliament, which has to be fully informed of all stages of the negotiations, must also give its consent. After the agreement is concluded, it will have to be ratified by all 47 contracting parties to the ECHR in accordance with their respective constitutional requirements, including by those who are also EU Member States. Both sides are committed to a smooth and swift conclusion of the talks, allowing the accession to take place as early as possible.

For more information :

Homepage of Viviane Reding, Vice-President and Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship

Homepage of Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe.

Council of Europe:
Giuseppe Zaffuto: +33 3 90 21 56 04
giuseppe.zaffuto@coe.int

European Commission:
Matthew Newman: +32 2 296 24 06
Mina Andreeva: +32 2 299 13 82

Council of Europe Directorate of Communication
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11

Monday, 5 July 2010

DARE General Assembly accepts EDC/HRE key players as new members

At DARE´s General Assembly on 3rd July 2010 in Vilnius 7 new member organisations joined the DARE network. For a strong commitment of Europe for Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education strong NGO´s are evidently needed. The DARE network is proud to welcome again further key organisations from various levels of NGO work as new members!
Turkey:
Kıbrıslı Türk İnsan Hakları Vakfı - Turkish Cypriot Human Rights Foundation,
Italy: VIS – VOLONTARIO INTERNAZIONALE PER LO SVILUPPO – International Volunteers for Development,
Norway: MENNESKERETTIGHETSAKADEMIET – Human Rights Academy,
Bulgaria:
Българска мрежа за обучение по човешки права - Bulgarian Network for Human Rights Education,
EU: The European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA),
Austria: Zentrum für Friedensforschung und Friedenspädagogik – Centree for Peace Research and Peace Education,
Bosnia & Hercegovina: Udruzenje Grazdanski Eduaktivni Centar – Association Citizen´s Educational Center.
We look forward for the future cooperation in the growing DARE community and are glad for the strong support!

Sunday, 4 July 2010

DARE Video 5: Yulia Pererva (CoE) on the relevance of the EDC/HRE Charter for NGOs

At the DARE Focus Meeting “Citizenship Reloaded: The Demand for `Active Citizenship´ in Europe and its Implications for Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education (EDC/HRE)" in Vilnius/Lithuania, July 1-3, 2010, 37 stakeholders from 16 European countries explored challenges for EDC/HRE under rapidly changing European policy frames.

Yulia Pererva (Council of Europe, Division on Citizenship and Human Rights Education) stressed the importance of the recently adopted CoE Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education, which states in section 10: “Member states should foster the role of non-governmental organisations and youth organisations in education for democratic citizenship and human rights education, especially in non-formal education. They should recognise these organisations and their activities as a valued part of the educational system, provide them where possible with the support they need and make full use of the expertise they can contribute to all forms of education.”



For more information on the focus meeting “Citizenship Reloaded: The Demand for `Active Citizenship´ in Europe and its Implications for Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education (EDC/HRE)", check www.dare-network.eu

Check the full DARE video library here!

DARE Video 1-4: DARE Conference Nov 2008 on Intercultural Dialogue, interviews with participants, part 1
part 2
part 3
part 4

DARE Video 6: Niamh O´Reilly (AONTAS) explains how the Irish National Qualification Framework embraces non-formal education, and how that might ultimately lead to obtaining a PHD degree without ever having participated in the formal education systems.

DARE Video 7: Frank Elbers (HREA) on elements of the drafting process of the recently adopted Council of Europe “Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education” and its importance as a lobbying tool for NGOs.

DARE Video 8: Gintaras Stepanovicius, Lithuanian Minister of Education on the relevance of Human Rights Education and Education for Democratic Citizenship, the key role of NGOs, and the importance of non-uniform approaches in formal and non-formal education.

DARE Video 9: Britta Lejon (EAEA) explains the challenges of the Europe 2020 program for adult education, and points out that adult education is a part of the solution of the current crisis.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Citizenship Reloaded: DARE Focus Meeting and Policy Recommendations

The DARE Focus Meeting “Citizenship Reloaded: The Demand for `Active Citizenship´ in Europe and its Implications for Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education (EDC/HRE)" in Vilnius/Lithuania, July 1-3, 2010, brought together 37 stakeholders from 16 European countries. They explored challenges for EDC/HRE under rapidly changing European policy frames, such as the European and national qualification frameworks and their implications for non-formal EDC/HRE.

In his opening speech, the Lithuanian Minister for Education, Gintaras Steponavicius, stressed the link between history education and HRE/EDC and reminded the audience that in the Soviet Union “education was directed to kill normal citizenship feelings”. He stressed the important role of NGOs and diverse non-formal approaches and emphasized “we should not seek a uniform approach to EDC/HRE”.

Special attention was given to the recently adopted Council of Europe´s Charter on Education for Democratic Citizenship and Human Rights Education and the future potential of this non-binding document to supporting the work of NGOs (as outlined in section II.5 of the charter).

Policy recommendations on “Validation and Assessment in Non-Formal EDC/HRE” and “The Impact of Active Citizenship on HRE/EDC” were drafted and will be published soon.

More information at www.dare-network.eu