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Parliamentary questions
14 June 2018
E-001350/2018
Answer given by Mr Stylianides on behalf of the Commission

Education is a fundamental right and a key element of the Sustainable Development Goals and international refugee response.(1) The new Communication on Education in Emergencies and Protracted Crises(2), adopted on 18 May 2018, establishes an EU policy framework for EU external action in the sector, underpinned by the context-specific mobilisation of short, medium and long-term responses.

It aligns EU policy with the ambitions of the 2016 New York Declaration through supporting proactive and rapid response mechanisms, including by humanitarian organisations and governments, to reach children and young people during emergencies and crises and aim to return them to learning within three months. Where possible and appropriate, Union financing supports government systems, including those hosting refugees, as the primary duty-bearers of the right to education. This aligns with the aim to achieve durable solutions, including through the inclusion of refugee students into national systems as per the 2030 Education Agenda(3).

Education in emergencies has been scaled up from 1% of the EU's humanitarian aid budget in 2015 to 8% (an initial EUR 86 million) in 2018. Under the new Communication, the EU will aim to increase this funding to 10% as of 2019. The majority of projects supports forcibly displaced and host communities. Refugee focused projects are funded — both in and outside of camp settings — in East Africa and the Great Lakes region, in the Syria region and in Asia.

Education in emergencies actions focus at quality formal and non-formal education at primary, lower and upper secondary levels, providing pathways to quality, safe and accredited education. These responses follow the curricular levels of the formal system of the host country or, for non-formal education provision, responses should be aligned to the formal systems, with efforts of integration and recognition.

To ensure quality, all actions supported must comply with the Inter-Agency Network on Education in Emergencies (INEE) minimum standards for education in emergencies(4) and in particular with the principles of Conflict Sensitive Education.

(1)Article 14 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union enshrines the right to education. Education is also enshrined in the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child and the 1951 Refugee Convention. Sustainable Development Goal 4 aims to deliver ‘inclusive and quality education for all and to promote lifelong learning’. The 2017 New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants pinpoints education as a critical element of the international refugee response.
(2)COM(2018) 304 final
(3)Education 2030: Incheon Declaration and Framework for Action
(4)INEE Minimum Standards for Education: Preparedness, Response, Recovery.

Last updated: 14 June 2018Legal notice