Dr Sev Ozdowski OAM
NEW SOUTH WALES
Several CPACS members are involved in the New South Wales Human Rights Education Committee. Human rights education is critical to maintaining and fostering a tolerant, just, equitable and democratic society. Recognising the importance of human rights education in Australia and the currently existing gaps in its delivery and coordination, a number of Australians with the support and encouragement of government agencies, business and community organisations have established a Committee on Human Rights Education. Fundamental to the work of the Committee will be defining and re-examining human rights education in NSW and ensuring our community draws the greatest possible benefit from it. At the heart of human rights education is promotion of values and access to education that can be summed up in the Australian ethos of ‘a fair go for all’.
NSWHREC have been meeting at six-weekly intervals in the CPACS Gallery. The executive committee comprises a number of CPACS members including Dr Tim Marchant (secretary); Father Claude Mostowik (treasurer); Jenny McNaughton; Ann Hinton and Laurie Craddock. In 2007, volunteer interns Vivianna Rodriguez (Peru) and Mauricio Bastien (Mexico) showed great flair and creativity in furthering two projects “The Citizenship of Humanity” – introducing human rights education lessons to primary schools – and, with the Sydney Peace Foundation, “The Schools Peace Initiative” – providing an online gallery for high schools peace projects.
Visit the New South Wales Human Rights Education Committee website. Citizenship of Humanity See the Citizen of Humanity lesson guide for more information on Teaching About Human Rights.
ACHRE is working to establish its presence in Queensland. For human rights education issues in Queensland, please contact the Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland (ADCQ) on 1300 130 670 or visit its website: AD Commission
The Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland is an independent statutory authority established under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991. The core business is to receive and deal with complaints f discrimination and other contraventions of the Act, and to promote human rights in Queensland.ADCQ has offices located in Brisbane, Rockhampton, Townsville and Cairns. The Brisbane office is located at: 53 Albert Street, Brisbane (cnr Albert and Margaret Streets near the City Botanic Gardens).
Victoria has introduced the Good Ideas for Human Rights Education project, which documents and disseminates good practice in human rights education across the school sectors in Victoria, and established a Languages & Multicultural Education Resource Centre which provides professional development programs on anti-racism education, the needs of refugees and other groups of at risk students, and culturally inclusive curriculum.Victorian Human Rights Education Committee | Lesson Plan
The ACT has implemented a trial scheme with Amnesty International to introduce Human Rights Education programs into high schools and primary schools, and introduced the School Excellence Initiative, whichreviews ACT government schools on a three-yearly basis against criteria which include student involvement in active citizenship and a curriculum the promotes intercultural understanding and ethnic and gender diversity.
Further, the Every Chance to Learn: Curriculum Framework for ACT also includes the role of international agreements and organisations in protecting human rights.
As part of the Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) the ACT ACHRE is highly active in promoting Human Rights education by making contribution to the bilateral Human Rights dialogue between the Australian Government and China, Laos and Vietnam. National Statements of Learning for Civics and Citizenship
The Tasmanian Centre for Global Learning is a non-profit organisation which promotes an understanding of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Centre provides two websites with information and resources on human rights and social justice issues, A Fairer World and A Fairer World Youth. Their Global Citizen page provides teaching resources to support the Citizen of Humanity Project.
The Northern Territory government has adopted the NT Curriculum Framework (NTCF), Strong Beginnings and the National Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) which include a number of Human Rights Education practices. These practices are premised on:
The NTCF has Studies of Society and the Environment (SOSE) which has sections on Civics, Governance, Social Justice and Cultural Diversity and is taught throughout schooling. This subject also includes Indigenous Studies and Values Beliefs.
The EYLF is a National framework for small children from birth to five years and its approach is socio-cultural with Belonging, Being and Becoming as overarching values. It states values of cultural competence and respect for cultural diversity. The EYLF is a framework and not a curriculum document but has a very strong sense of children’s rights and the rights of diverse communities and families. The Strong Beginnings is a guide to Quality practice for three to five year olds.
Northern Territory Council for Human Rights Education (NTCHRE) was officially launched by Julian Burnside, QC on 18 April 2011 (for Mr Burnside inaugural address see: Mr Burnside inaugural address here)
The NTCHRE undertakes a range of activities to advance human rights education in NT, including:
Facilitation of public lectures on various Human Rights topicsFor example, NTCHRE has hosted many prominent speakers like Julian Burnside QC, Catherine Branson QC, Rex Wild QC, Rev Djinivini Gondara, Dr Stephen Gray, Professor George Williams and many Indigenous leaders and elders.
Design pedagogy on Human Rights Education with rural community schools
In September 2011 NTCHRE has secured the Federal Government AG’s Grant for Human Rights to design pedagogy and facilitate human rights education workshops in remote community schools.
Collaboration and partnership with NGOs, government agencies and interests groups to carry our common goals on human rights development in Australia, Asia Pacific and South East AsiaCurrently NTCHRE have working relationships on common projects with the NT Anti-Discrimination Commission, NT Legal Aid Commission, the Darwin Asylum Seekers Network and Charles Darwin University.
Initiate a movement for a Charter of Human Rights in the NT
The NTCHRE Management Committee Members are:
Human Rights Education in Western Australia
At the tertiary level
Established in January 2003, the Centre for Human Rights Education at Curtin University of Technology is the principal provider of human rights education at the tertiary level. The Centre provides a focal point for research, teaching and scholarly activity in the area of human rights education. It offers a Graduate Certificate in Human Rights and a Master of Human rights as well as research degrees. Other universities do address human rights, particularly in law and humanities degrees, but Curtin is the only university in Australia with a dedicated, inter-disciplinary centre.
The current West Australian curriculum addresses human rights in the core values embedded in the curriculum, notably respect for self, respect and concern for others and their rights and social and civic responsibility. These values are addressed explicitly and implicitly in subject areas including history, English and the arts as well as in special programs such as Indigenous literacy, gifted and talented education and sustainability education. Many faith-based schools also address human rights education in their religious education programs. Human rights education is also included in the Australian Curriculum. The Australian HREOC produces teaching materials on human rights that are already in use in many schools.
The office of the West Australian Commissioner for Children and Young People has produced a number of resources for teachers to use in primary school classes at all levels from Kindergarten to Year 7. The materials, which include posters, lesson plans and teaching materials encourage children to thinks about their role in their communities, and ways in which they can improve their communities. An awareness of human rights underpins all the materials and suggested activities. The Commissioner also hosts or provides seminars, public forums and other programs on the safety and well-being of children and young people, all of which are based on an understanding of children’s rights as human rights.
The Centre for Human Rights Education at Curtin University provides speakers on human rights and human rights education for students, teachers and parents both primary and secondary schools. The Human Rights are Aussie Rules Project is a schools-based education program teaching children about human rights through principles of fair play and good sportsmanship. The national office is based in Melbourne; in Western Australian the project is co-ordinated by the Western Suburbs Community Legal Centre. Children examine the concepts of fair play respect, equality and dignity in on the sports field and compare them with other situations. The Human Rights are Aussie Rules Project is funded by the Commonwealth, the Victorian government, the Victorian Multicultural Commission, the Victorian HREOC, the Castan Centre and a number of private organisations.
Many schools also have links with community groups that promote an awareness of human rights or human rights education.
In the community
The Centre for Human Rights Education at Curtin University also engages in community education by organising public events around human rights issues, often in partnership with community groups as it seeks to promote cross-cultural dialogue about human rights. The Centre has a special focus on raising awareness of human rights in a range of occupations and provides education programs or speakers to professional and workplace groups.
A number of community organisations also actively promote human rights education in the community, in the workplace and in schools. These include Amnesty International, the WA Gender Project, an advocacy group that aims to advance the human rights of transsexual, transgender and intersex people, and the Council on the Ageing (WA) which held a conference to raise awareness about human rights issues affecting older people in 2011. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Healing Foundation Human conducts human rights education for Indigenous community members across Australia and development of human rights education resources in local languages. It is very active in WA.
The first management committee meeting of the newly formed incorporated body - Council for Human Rights Education Inc - was held recently at Adelaide High School on 22 March, 2013.
The Council is a sub-committee of the Australian Council for Human Rights Education (ACHRE) and will address local issues in South Australia and will support and work closely with the National Council for Human Rights Education for broader national and international projects and further promoting the National Human Rights Framework across Australia.
The objects of the association are:
In the first instance, one of the CHRE(SA) key projects "Citizen for Humanity Project" will be further extended in 2013 - 2014 to schools across South Australia, particularly in regional centres, country and remote areas. The official launch of the CHRE (SA Chapter) in South Australia will be at 6.00pm on 19th July, 2013 at the Adelaide High School. The members who attended the first management committee meeting on the 22 March are listed below. The Management wishes to express their gratitude to Dr Sev Ozdowski OAM, President of the ACHRE, who was a special guest at the meeting.