PASIG CITY, November 8, 2019 – The Department of Education (DepEd), through its Legal Affairs Office, in partnership with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Save the Children Philippines, Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC), Plan International Philippines, Child Protection Network (CPN), and Ateneo Human Rights Center, is set to conduct the First National Summit on the Rights of the Child in Education on November 14 -15 at The Heritage Hotel Manila, Pasay City.

Anchored on the theme, “Bata, Bata: Karapatan Mo, Tungkulin Ko”, the two-day summit is in line with the commemoration of the 30th Anniversary of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (CRC) on November 20, and the annual celebration of the National Children’s Month in November under Republic Act No. 10661.

The event aims to reaffirm the commitment of the stakeholders to respect, protect and fulfill the rights of the child, as enshrined in the 1987 Philippine Constitution, other domestic laws and rules, and international law, primarily the CRC; unpack the various rights of the child in basic education and provide a venue to deepen appreciation of these by both the rights-holders and duty-bearers in a rights-based framework of basic education; and celebrate successes in upholding the rights of the child and identify challenges in their realization to help address them with a whole-of-society approach, including the participation of children themselves as rights-holders.

“Every child, no matter how small, is a whole person with dignity and rights. We are celebrating this truth in this first national summit on the rights of the child in education. As duty-bearers, we are called to respect, protect, fulfil and promote children’s physical, moral, spiritual, intellectual, and social being.  Our youth have a significant role in nation-building,” Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Josephine Maribojoc explained.

“Every child should have access to education, as stated in Article 28 of the CRC, and that education aims at the holistic development of children under Article 29 of the CRC,” Maribojoc added.

Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones will deliver the keynote address in the summit. United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child Member and Independent Expert Mikiko Otani will come over to the Philippines to discuss the CRC.  Ambassador Maria Teresa Almojuela, Deputy Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the United Nations and Other International Organizations in Geneva, Switzerland, will also deliver a Statement of Commitment to the rights of the child during the summit.

The participants of the conference are children and their parents, teachers and personnel of public and private basic education schools, DepEd officials from central, regional, and schools division offices, and representatives from government agencies, civil society, and international organizations.