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UN Transforming Education Summit September 2022

UN Transforming Education Summit September 2022

On the International Day of Education, the UN Secretary-General’s office announced the Transforming Education Summit and encouraged everyone to unite in making education a common good and a top political priority.

The COVID-19 pandemic led to an unprecedented educational crisis, interrupting the schooling of 1.6 billion students at the height of the crisis. Even today, the schooling of nearly 31 million students remains disrupted by school closures. As António Guterres, Unites Nations Secretary-General, points out, the proportion of children in developing countries who leave school unable to read could rise from 53% to 70% if we do not act.

Beyond the issues of access and inequality, education faces major challenges: technical innovation, dramatic changes in the world of work, the reality of the climate emergency and a general loss of trust between people and institutions. There is a need to place education at the heart of efforts to transform the economy and society towards sustainable development. This also means launching a reflection on how education systems can evolve to accompany and support this transformation of societies by 2030. 

This is the objective of the Education Transformation Summit to be held in New York in September 2022 during the 77th Assembly of the United Nations. Recognising that education is a foundation for peace, tolerance, human rights and sustainable development, this Summit aims to mobilise and converge actions, ambitions, solidarity and solutions to transform education by 2030. A pre-Summit conference will take place in Paris in June 2022. A focused, intensive and inclusive preparatory process has been launched by UNESCO, with the aim of taking into account the priorities of Member States and ensuring the meaningful engagement of young people and all education stakeholders.

The UNESCO Chair is a partner in this event and is involved in its preparation, particularly in the area of “inclusive, equitable, healthy and safe schools”.

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Call for participation: Collection of case studies on genuine participation of children and young people

Call for participation: Collection of case studies on genuine participation of children and young people

The UNESCO Chair has launched a call for participation to collect case studies of successful projects and initiatives on how to involve children and young people in improving their health and wellbeing. The collection and analysis of case studies is part of a global initiative on genuine participation of children and young people in health promotion. The case studies will help us to improve, test and implement models and approaches for children’s and young people’s genuine participation in the future. They will be included in a publication, edited by Professor Didier Jourdan, chair holder of the UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education, and colleagues. Everyone who is involved in or has experience with initiatives and projects that actively involve children and young people in promoting their health and well-being is invited to contribute.

For more information download the Call for participation or visit the dedicated webpage.

We would be grateful if you could share this call for participation with your relevant contacts and networks.

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UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education and JOGG: joining forces for a Lifestyle Transition

UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education and JOGG: joining forces for a Lifestyle Transition

Press release – The UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education and JOGG are combining forces to put a Lifestyle Transition on the agenda of national and international policymakers. A Lifestyle Transition for and together with today’s young people. A healthy future demands cross-domain cooperation focused on creating a healthy environment and a healthy lifestyle. Something which does not end at national borders.

Unhealthy environment

A healthy future begins with a healthy younger generation. Among children and young people who grow up in a healthy environment. But at the moment that environment is far from healthy. Everywhere children go they are constantly being bombarded with messages to eat both unhealthy food and too much of it, while they enjoy less and less physical exercise. On top of which the differences in health between those from poorer backgrounds and those who are better off, are only growing. The result has been a huge increase in diseases of affluence, including among children. Together with all the adverse effects that this has, both for the individual and for society.

Joined action for a Lifestyle Transition

“The present lifestyle crisis demands action. Action to narrow the health gap and improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people,” says JOGG director, Marjon Bachra. “We need to move towards a society where being able to have a healthy lifestyle is the norm. But we can only achieve that by taking a holistic approach. One which embraces all domains and sectors. Something on which both JOGG and the UNESCO Global Health & Education Chair agree. It is high time for a Lifestyle Transition.”

From today JOGG and the UNESCO Chair will support one another on the road to creating a healthier society, both nationally and internationally. The active involvement of children and young people themselves plays an important part in this. For example, the JOGG Youth Health Community is supporting the UNESCO Chair with an international project aimed at actively involving young people in creating a world which is healthy and pleasant to live in. Not just because participation is their fundamental right, but because it is also vital if the interventions to improve health are to be effective.

About JOGG – Healthy Youngsters with a Healthy Future

JOGG is a driver of the Lifestyle Transition in the Netherlands. The organisation has developed and facilitates a worknet which connects more than 200 Dutch municipalities and roughly a hundred other partners in society, fundamental and applied research and the business community. It is described as a ‘worknet’ because all the parties are working to achieve this. Based on the integrated JOGG approach, together they are working to create a healthier environment for the young, in policy and in practice. An environment in which it is easy to eat healthy food, get sufficient exercise and relax.

About the UNESCO Chair for Global Health & Education

The UNESCO Chair for Global Health & Education is a UNESCO Chair associated with the Clermont Auvergne University in France, with Professor Didier Jourdan as chairholder and Goof Buijs as manager. The UNESCO Chair works globally to strengthen health promotion and disease prevention, targeted mainly towards young people and aimed at lifelong learning. The emphasis is on creating the right conditions whereby children and young people can take more control of their own lives, as individuals, as members of their community and as world citizens.

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UNICEF report: Preventing a lost decade

UNICEF report: Preventing a lost decade

Two years into the pandemic, the widespread effects of COVID-19 continue to worsen, increasing poverty and deepening inequalities. While some countries are recovering and rebuilding a ‘new normal’, for many, COVID-19 remains a crisis. The human rights of children around the world have not been so threatened for more than a generation.

The global response so far has been very uneven and inadequate. The world now stands at a crossroads. The actions taken today will determine the well-being and rights of children for years to come.

As UNICEF celebrates its 75th anniversary, the report “Preventing a lost decade. Urgent action to reverse the devastating impact of COVID-19 on children and young people” takes stock of the effects of the ongoing impact of  COVID-19 on children and outlines the road to respond and recover to reimagine the future for every child.

For more information and to download the report (available in English, French, Spanish, Arabic)

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Webinar Implications of adultcentrism on the health of children and adolescents in Latin America – 17 February 2022

Webinar Implications of adultcentrism on the health of children and adolescents in Latin America – 17 February 2022

On 17 February 2022, 16.00 – 17.00 CEST / 11.00 – 12.00 AST, the UNESCO Chair and WHO Collaborating Center Global Health & Education, the University of Puerto Rico, and the Ana G. Méndez University will organise the webinar: Implications of adultcentrism on the health of children and adolescents in Latin America. The webinar will be held in Spanish.

This webinar aims to explore the implications of adultcentrism on the overall health of children and adolescents in Latin America. To this end, a conceptual definition of adultcentrism will be presented, focusing on its ideological, economic and political dimensions, explaining its effect on child and adolescent health. Various regional examples of how the health of children and adolescents is undermined as a result of adult centred views will be presented. Then, the speakers will present how the framework of child and youth citizenship can help us to overcome the impact of adultcentrism on health. Finally, they will point out specific contributions aimed at renewing the framework of health promotion with this age group.

The speakers are:

  • Dr. Iván De Jesús Rosa, Lecturer in Social Work, Ana G. Méndez University, Puerto Rico
  • Dr. Elba Betancourt Díaz, Lecturer in Social Work, Ana G. Méndez University, Puerto Rico

The moderator is:

  • Dr.Marinilda Rivera Díaz, Puerto Rico. Coordinator of the Doctoral Programme in Social Determinants of Health at the Graduate School of Public Health, Department of Social Sciences, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico.

The speakers will explore the following questions:

  1. What are the implications of adultcentrism for the health of children and adolescents in Latin America?
  2. How can the framework of child and youth citizenship help us to overcome the impact of adultcentrism on health?
  3. How does our work contribute to the renewal of the health promotion (research) framework? What are the priorities in the field of health promotion?

Zoom registration link. Registration is free of charge. The link to the webinar will be sent to you after registration.This webinar will also be streamed live on our YouTube channel

More information.

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UNICEF Report – The State of the World’s Children 2021

UNICEF Report – The State of the World’s Children 2021

In my mind – Promoting, protecting and caring for children’s mental health.

UNICEF recently published a report on the mental health of children around the world. The COVID-19 pandemic has raised concerns about the mental health of a generation of children. But the pandemic may represent the tip of a mental health iceberg – an iceberg we have ignored for far too long. 

The State of the World’s Children 2021 examines the mental health of children, adolescents and their caregivers. It highlights the risks and protective factors at key moments in the life course and analyses the social determinants that influence mental health and well-being.

In addition, the report calls for commitment, communication and action as part of a comprehensive approach to promote good mental health for every child, protect vulnerable children and care for children facing the greatest challenges.

Click here for an interactive view of data from the report

The report is available in EnglishFrenchSpanish and Arabic.

For parents

Click here for tips and resources on how to talk to your child about mental health.

For young people
Click here for tips on reaching out, providing support and breaking the stigma around mental health.

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Online pre-conference Genuine Participation and the Transformational Potential of Health Promotion – 10 November 2021

Online pre-conference Genuine Participation and the Transformational Potential of Health Promotion – 10 November 2021

Join the preconference Genuine Participation and the Transformational Potential of Health Promotion – Coronavirus Politics on 10 November 2021 from 9.00 CET. The focus of this pre-conference is to open new perspectives on genuine participation as a means to highlight the transformational potential of Health Promotion. By shifting participation as a mantra to participation as a practice this pre-conference aims at establishing a stronger focus to inclusion as part of health-for-all-policies. In this session we will explore different perspectives to the future of the transformational potential of health promotion focusing on the global and the national level.

Next to these objectives, we wish to create a space that supports international networking among professionals and researchers interested in advancing participatory community-based public health interventions.

The pre-conference is organized by the EUPHA Health Promotion section, UNESCO Chair Global Health & Education and International Institute, University of Michigan during the 14th European Public Health Conference (Glasgow 10-12 November)

For more information and registration

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Involve children and young people in assessing the impact of school closures on their wellbeing and developing strategies for post-COVID-19 schooling

Involve children and young people in assessing the impact of school closures on their wellbeing and developing strategies for post-COVID-19 schooling

Article published in MDPI on 5 September 2021

Nearly 200 countries have implemented school closures to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus. Although these closures have seemed necessary, there have been serious concerns about their effects on the well-being of children and adolescents. To truly understand the impact of these closures on children’s and adolescent’s well-being, and their suggestions for the future, it is important to adopt new approaches to collecting data that will ensure the right of children and adolescents to be heard on issues that affect them.

Current methods of assessing the impacts of school closure are dominated by the collection of information about children and adolescents, mainly using existing wellbeing indicators and related questionnaire surveys. While these sources of information are important, they provide only a limited understanding of how children and adolescents have experienced school closure, especially if they have been produced using measures developed solely by adults. There is a need for information produced by children and adolescents themselves, which may need to go beyond existing theoretical frameworks of wellbeing that predate COVID-19.

By gathering information from children and adolescents, the authors of this paper[1] show that we can more effectively guide the development and evaluation of public health policies and identify solutions to mitigate the negative impacts of school closures, or to recognise and respond to any positive effects.

Read the article

[1] Paakkari, L., Jourdan, D., Inchley, J., & Torppa, M. (2021). The Impact of School Closure on Adolescents’ Wellbeing, and Steps toward to a New Normal : The Need for an Assessment Tool Update? Adolescents1(3), 360‑362. https://doi.org/10.3390/adolescents1030027

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COVID-19 in children and the role of school settings in transmission – second update

COVID-19 in children and the role of school settings in transmission – second update

ECDC has recently published the report ‘COVID-19 in children and the role of school settings in transmission – second update’, which revises our current understanding of the role that children play in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, and the role of schools in the COVID-19 pandemic.

The aim of this document is to provide an update on the knowledge surrounding the role of children in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and the role of schools in the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing in particular on the experience in EU/EEA countries since the beginning of the pandemic.

Children of all ages are susceptible to COVID-19 and can transmit the disease. However, cases of COVID-19 in younger children do not appear to cause onward transmission as often as cases in older children and adults. Children aged between one and 18 years of age have much lower rates of hospitalisation and severe disease requiring intensive hospital care than other age groups.

Although school closures could contribute to a reduction in COVID-19 transmission as a measure of last resort, the closures in themselves are insufficient to prevent community transmission in the absence of other non-pharmaceutical interventions. Moreover, vaccination coverage is now also increasing. Given the continued risk of transmission among unvaccinated children, it is imperative that there is a high level of preparedness in educational systems for the school year 2021−2022.

By the time schools reopen for the new school year, children and adolescents will have become the age groups with the lowest rates of COVID-19 vaccination coverage in the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA). Therefore, in the absence of strict adherence to effective public health mitigation measures, concentrated circulation of COVID-19 is to be expected, including outbreaks in this age group.

For more information and access to the full report

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Making every school a health-promoting school

Making every school a health-promoting school

Virtual meeting organised by WHO and UNESCO – 22 June 2021 13.00 – 14.00 CEST

The health, well-being and education of children and young people are closely intertwined. With a vision that every school around the world becomes a Health-Promoting School (HPS), UNESCO and the World Health Organization (WHO) have developed a joint initiative to support Member States strengthen the health promoting function of education systems. 

This global launch will feature the introduction of the initiative and present a newly-developed guidance package consisting of four publications

  1. Global standards and indicators for health-promoting schools and systems; 
  2. Implementation guidance; 
  3. Country case studies; and
  4. Guideline for school health services. 

Global and country-level stakeholders, including representatives from government and school communities will present their perspectives and experiences in implementing school health and health-promoting school approaches. 

The event will be available in English, French, Arabic and Spanish

Agenda

  • Statements by the Directors General of WHO and UNESCO (TBC)
  • Presentation: Towards global standards for health-promoting schools for all
  • Roundtable 1: Voices from the school community
  • Roundtable 2: Perspectives of national policymakers
  • Roundtable 3: Perspectives of development partners
  • Conclusion and closing remarks

For more information contact: healthpromotion@who.int

To register: https://who.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_2tS0XUbFSra_2-YOJBWNQg

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