Whole of Syria Education

In September 2014, three separate operations – the country operation in Syria and the cross-border operations from Turkey and Jordan – were brought together into a single response framework. In October 2014, partners from these three Hubs came together to draft the 2015 Humanitarian Needs Overview (HNO) and the 2015 Syria Strategic Response Plan (SRP). One united appeal for Syria was launched. In February 2015, the coordination of Whole of Syria (WoS) was formalized with the implementation of the 2015 SRP.

The overall goal of the Whole of Syria (WoS) Education Focal Point(s) is to ensure coherence and consistency of humanitarian action in Syria across the Hubs in Damascus, Gaziantep and Amman. For Education, the necessity for this role is clearly highlighted by the No Lost Generation (NLG) Initiative. The NLG Initiative underlines that strategic investments in the education of children affected by the Syria crisis can provide them with the skills and sense of civic responsibility needed to help rebuild their society. The need for a well evidenced, articulated, coherent and costed strategy across the three Hubs to rebuilding education in Syria is paramount and the WoS approach gives an opportunity to help make this a reality.

The role of the WoS Education Focal Point is to provide support to the Hubs by facilitating WoS analysis, planning and reporting and ensuring coherence and harmonization of standards across the three Hubs. UNICEF and Save the Children have been selected as the Co-Focal Points through consultation with the three Hubs. Both organizations are co-leads of the Global Education Cluster and bring in the necessary experience and expertise.



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Why the Safe Schools Declaration? ALL children have the right to a safe education. Around the world, schools are attacked or being occupied by military forces in conflict zones... Sports fields become battlefields. Classrooms become munitions rooms. This has a devastating effect on children. It endangers their lives, their teachers’ lives, and denies hundreds of thousands of children their right to education. The Safe Schools Declaration is a political commitment to protect education during armed conflict, ensuring the safety of a country’s future. So far 55 countries have shown their support by endorsing it. 

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Renewed fighting in Aleppo has put children at risk, with schools coming under attack in recent weeks. The 1070 intermediary school for girls was built by UNICEF in 2013 and provided a respite for displaced children in the neighbourhood. But after heavy bombardments on 31 July, students fled and never returned. The life of a child in Aleppo has become even more dangerous in recent weeks, as intense attacks and fighting escalate across the city. At a time when children are at even greater risk of bombardments and fighting in the Syrian Arab Republic, education has become another casualty. Schools in Aleppo have come under attack, with many occupied by fighters and left destroyed or damaged.

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ROME, Aug 3 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - With just 60 days to go before the start of the new school year, hundreds of thousands of Syrian parents are faced with the stark choice of whether to feed their children or send them to school, experts said on Wednesday. Nearly 1 million Syrian refugee children are out of school in Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan which host the vast majority of the nearly 5 million refugees created by Syria's civil war. Many Syrian children are forced to work to help make ends meet, or unable to pay for transport to school, according to a report written by the head of the London-based thinktank, Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

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Across the Syrian Arab Republic, children are putting their lives at risk to sit for their final exams in school. Hear the stories of six children who travelled across conflict lines to continue their education, in hopes of building a brighter future for their country. What would you do if the only way you could sit for your high school exams was to travel for 13 hours through countless checkpoints manned by heavily armed fighters? How would you feel if 12 years of hard work to get your diploma was in vain because of a war that never seemed to end?

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More than five years of war, which began as a peaceful protest against President Bashar al-Assad and has since drawn in foreign military involvement and allowed for the growth of Islamic State, has displaced millions of Syrian children and limited their access to education. With schools themselves at times attacked, teachers make do with the basics to provide education. Syrian student Ali Khaled Stouf has to walk down several steps into a hole in the ground to get inside his school - a cave.

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