The inception meeting of the FoRCESA project was held in Johannesburg on 14 June 2018. The meeting was well attended with both government and non-government participation.

Delegates were drawn from:

  • Government partners: seven CSTL Ministries of Education viz: DRC, Mozambique, Malawi, South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Zambia
  • Non-government partners: UNICEF, UNFPA, Save the Children, CRNSA, SADC and MIET AFRICA.

An overview of the project was presented by the Manager <click here for presentation> explaining how the civil and political rights of children in the ESA regional are integrated into, and have the potential to be advanced, through 21st century learning.  However, for learners to acquire the competencies to succeed in the 21st century will require re-appraising our approach to education.  In particular, 21st century approach has learner agency at its core, where learners are provided with the opportunity to participate meaningfully and make decisions that affect their learning.  FoRCESA will assist Ministries of Education to operationalise the CSTL Policy Framework and particular reference was made to the policy statements related to Policy Issuer 4, which addresses quality teaching and learning.

The project overview was followed by the initial research findings <click here for presentation> by Patricia Martin.  Patricia shared the initial findings of the desktop review she is conducting on 21st century learning as a potential vehicle for promoting child participation and enhancing children’s civil and political rights. She explained how the education system is key to ensuring children are thoroughly equipped to be and become engaged citizens now and in the future, in economic, social, cultural and political society.  To ensure that education achieves its legally prescribed purpose of ensuring children are engaged citizens requires transformation of the whole education system.  It requires its reorientation, through curriculum and governance reform to secure 21st century learning outcomes, including children that are knowledgeable and able to exercise their civil and political rights through participation in all decisions that affect them.  She explained that currently most education systems do not meet the challenges of 21st century learning and that CSTL provides an ideal vehicle for driving transformation of education systems to achieve 21st century learning goals and objectives.  CSTL calls for education transformation to ensure it is relevant and of the highest quality to fulfil its legally prescribed purpose.  Further, that this is indeed the core focus of CSTL.  It requires Ministries of Education to ensure quality and relevance through curriculum and governance reform.  Viewed within the 21st century imperatives, CSTL creates a duty to ensure that education curricula and governance practices empower and enable children’s exercise of their civil and political rights through meaning participation in and through education systems.

Summary of FoRCESA meeting