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The right to education of minorities

The right to education of minorities: overview of States’ measures reported in the 10th Consultation on the 1960 Convention and Recommendation against Discrimination in Education

Diversity in education should be seen as an asset as it has a great role to play for better cohesion, cultural diversity, economic benefit and inclusive societies. While their inclusion in society is key, persons belonging to minorities are often at risk of having their human rights violated and experiencing multiple discriminations.

As highlighted in the Vision Statement of the Secretary General during the Transforming Education Summit in 2022, the most vulnerable and marginalized – including persons belonging to minorities, are being left behind. As social tensions rise, minorities become more and more excluded from society because of persistent discrimination and exclusion – including exclusion from education.

However, access to inclusive and equitable quality education within a lifelong learning perspective is central to their effective and full inclusion in society. The target 4.5 of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 explicitly calls on States to ‘ensure equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and children in vulnerable situations, which includes minorities.

This document is part of a series of thematic reports on the implementation of the right to education, prepared by UNESCO based on the findings of the Tenth Consultation on the implementation of the 1960 Convention and Recommendation against Discrimination in Education conducted in 2020-2021. It is intended to serve as a practical tool for both information sharing and advocacy.

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