What is a Rights Respecting School?
At New Park Primary School, we have received the UNICEF Rights Respecting Schools Recognition of Commitment.
UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) is the organisation working specifically for children and their rights. Its mission is to campaign for the protection of children’s rights in order to meet children’s basic needs and empower them to realise their full potential.
UNICEF UK believes that these values should be embedded in the ethos and curriculum of our schools, and provides a framework in order to accomplish this. This is the purpose of the RRSA (Rights Respecting School Award).
At New Park, all children learn about their rights and responsibilities. They learn to associate rights with needs and distinguish between their rights and ‘wants’. They learn that if they have rights, they need to respect the rights of others.
Why are children learning about their rights at school?
In signing the UNCRC all Governments have a responsibility to make both children and adults aware of these rights. There are 42 rights of a child (articles) in the convention covering things such as; children having the right to education (article 27) and children have the right to be protected at all times (article 19).
Across the school, we have charters or agreements that the children have drawn up in order to make our school a Rights Respecting place. The children realise that they have a responsibility to themselves, to ensure that they take the opportunities that their rights offer.
What is meant by Rights and Responsibilities?
These are not the same as ‘wants’. Rights are the basic human needs and values that apply or should apply to everyone.
With rights come responsibilities. These include:
For children: the responsibility to respect the rights of others.
For parents: to respect and provide for the rights of their children.
For governments: to support families and to respect and provide for the rights of children.
What about children's respect for the rights of others?
Research has shown that when children are taught in school about their rights and responsibilities under the UNCRC, they are more respecting of the rights of others. Children who have learnt about their rights and responsibilities have :
Will children take advantage of adults if they are taught about their rights?
It is made clear that children not only have rights, but also the responsibility to respect the rights of others. That includes respect for parents, their values and culture. The Convention recognises the central importance of parents. It says that the government must respect the responsibility of parents for providing appropriate guidance for their children, including how children shall exercise their rights.
How can parents/carers support their child to learn about the Convention at home?
On the 11th October 2016 we achieved a certificate to recognise our commitment to achieving the Rights Respecting Award for our school.
Friday 2nd December 2016
Today our Rights Respecting Rangers took all the food that we have collected over the past few weeks to Tesco, Old Swan.
The children donated it to the Neighbourhood Food Bank who were doing their annual Christmas collection.
Thank you to everyone who kindly donated the tins and packets - it is very much appreciated.
Some of the Articles your child might have been discussing at home include:
Children have the right to good quality health care – the best health care possible – to safe drinking water, nutritious food, a clean and safe environment, and information to help them stay healthy. Rich countries should help poorer countries achieve this.
Children have the right to relax and play, and to join in a wide range of cultural, artistic and other recreational activities.
Children have the right to think and believe what they want and to practise their religion, as long as they are not stopping other people from enjoying their rights. Parents should help guide their children in these matters. The Convention respects the rights and duties of parents in providing religious and moral guidance to their children. Religious groups around the world have expressed support for the Convention, which indicates that it in no way prevents parents from bringing their children up within a religious tradition.
Children have the right to special protection and help if they are refugees (if they have been forced to leave their home and live in another country), as well as all the rights in this Convention.
Children have the right to a standard of living that is good enough to meet their physical and mental needs. Governments should help families and guardians who cannot afford to provide this, particularly with regard to food, clothing and housing.
All children have the right to a primary education, which should be free. Wealthy countries should help poorer countries achieve this right. Discipline in schools should respect children’s dignity. For children to benefit from education, schools must be run in an orderly way – without the use of violence. Any form of school discipline should take into account the child's human dignity. Therefore, governments must ensure that school administrators review their discipline policies and eliminate any discipline practices involving physical or mental violence, abuse or neglect. The Convention places a high value on education. Young people should be encouraged to reach the highest level of education of which they are capable.
Children’s education should develop each child’s personality, talents and abilities to the fullest. It should encourage children to respect others, human rights and their own and other cultures. It should also help them learn to live peacefully, protect the environment and respect other people. Children have a particular responsibility to respect the rights their parents, and education should aim to develop respect for the values and culture of their parents.