Update: The NI Commissioner and CCEA celebrate United Nations Universal Children’s Day, 20th November 2018

United Nations Universal Children’s Day was established in 1954 and is celebrated on November 20th each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children's welfare.

November 20th is an important date as it is the date in 1989 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

To celebrate the 2018 Universal Children’s Day, Koulla Yiasouma, the NI Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) and CCEA joined together to host her first ever live chat for primary and post primary teachers and pupils to learn more about the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). Koulla was joined in the studio by two members of the NICCY Youth Panel, Matthew Robinson and Aideen McHugh, who both asked and answered questions during the webinar.

As an understanding of children’s rights and the UNCRC are key aspects of the PD&MU (Personal Development and Mutual Understanding) and LLW (Learning for Life & Work) curricula, pupils had the chance to explore and ask questions about issues affecting them and find out more about how their lives are governed and how they can participate to improve the quality of their own lives (visit the UNCRC Resource Hub for further information and workshops on the UNCRC and Children’s Rights).

Over 40 schools logged into the live webinar and asked over 120 questions during 2 sessions, one for primary aged pupils and one for post-primary aged pupils. During these 2 sessions, the Commissioner. Aideen and Matthew answered as many questions as time allowed. Koulla promised to go back and work through answering all the questions asked.

The links below will take you to the two video recordings of the webinars (primary and post-primary) and two reports (primary and post-primary) compiling answers to all the questions asked.

Webinar links: 

Primary webinar recording and Primary Webinar Questions and Answers
Post-Primary webinar recording and Post-Primary Webinar Questions and Answers

Background

In June 2016, the UN published a report known as 'Concluding Observations'. The report is about how the UK is doing at keeping the promises it made to children and young people through the UNCRC. 

One of these ‘observations’ was to simply Make children’s rights education mandatory”.

Although currently not mandatory, children’s and young people’s rights are reflected with the NI school curriculum throughout Key Stages 1 to 4.

CCEA Partnership 

Since 2016, NICCY have been working in partnership with CCEA to promote child rights education within the school environment through developing a series of animations and associated teacher training resources – which can be found at the UNCRC Resource Hub.