Human Rights Watch welcomes the opportunity to provide input to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to education ahead of her first report to the Human Rights Council. This submission focusses on question nine in the questionnaire: “What are the crucial issues to address, nationally as well as internationally, to ensure the realization of the right to education?”
Right to Immediate Free Education under International Treaty Law
Research demonstrates the prodigious value of pre-primary education. However, several international human rights treaties that address the right to education are not explicit on this point. A number of treaty bodies have interpreted their treaties as requiring states to provide affordable, accessible, quality early childhood care and education that is inclusive and non-discriminatory, with adequate financial, technical, and human resources. Moreover, many children are excluded from secondary school, including technical and vocational school, because it is not free—which several relevant international treaties do not explicitly obligate governments to change.
Over the past decade, Human Rights Watch has interviewed children and parents in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Jordan, Lebanon, Pakistan, Senegal, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Turkey, and Uganda, who said that children were out of school because of an inability to pay for tuition, fees, and indirect costs—including for school materials, bribes, bureaucratic fees, compulsory after-school tuition, entrance fees, exam fees, textbooks, transport, parent-teacher association fees, and uniforms. Countries that remove school fees can experience substantial increases in enrollment.
Millions of children could benefit from clarifying and making explicit in international human rights law that children have an immediate right to at least one year of quality, inclusive, free pre-primary education, and free secondary education.
In September 2022, the previous Special Rapporteur on the right to education recommended that the right to early childhood education should be enshrined in a legally binding human rights instrument. Moreover, delegations gathered at the November 2022 World Conference on Early Childhood Care and Education in Uzbekistan adopted the “Tashkent Declaration,” in which they agreed to enhance legal frameworks to ensure that the right to education “includes the right to at least one year of free and compulsory pre-primary quality education for all children.”
Protection of Schools from Attack and Military Use
In most of the world’s current armed conflicts, students, teachers, and schools are coming under attack, and schools are being used for military purposes. This problem threatens the safety and lives of children, as well as their education. According to the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack, in 2020 and 2021, there were more than 5,000 reported attacks on students, teachers, schools, and universities, and incidents of military use of schools and universities, harming more than 9,000 students and educators in at least 85 countries. During those two years, at least 10 attacks occurred in 28 countries.
However, there are concrete steps that countries have taken to decrease the likelihood of such attacks, and to mitigate the damage when such attacks do occur. Greater awareness of these examples could encourage other states to take similar steps. These include protections in military doctrine, court decisions, and in legislation, and endorsing and implementing the Safe Schools Declaration.
As of January 2023, 116 countries have endorsed the Safe Schools Declaration, and its related Guidelines for Protecting Schools and Universities from Military Use during Armed Conflict. According to analysis by the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack, the overall reported incidents of military use of schools and universities declined by more than half between 2015 and 2020 in the 13 countries that endorsed the declaration in 2015 and 2016 and experienced at least one reported incident of military use during the same period.
The military manuals of Denmark, Ecuador, New Zealand, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom include explicit protections for schools from military use. Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, and Slovenia have announced their intentions to update their military manuals and doctrine to implement the commitment to protect schools from military use.
Colombia has a military order protecting schools from occupation by its armed forces.
Norway, Spain, and the United Kingdom have updated their military policies to reflect their commitments under the Safe Schools Declaration.
In 2019, the Philippines passed the Special Protection of Children in Situations of Armed Conflict Act, which makes attacks on schools and the occupation of schools a criminal offense.
In 2020, the Central African Republic promulgated the Child Protection Code, which criminalizes attacks on schools and the occupation of schools.
At least eight countries—Bangladesh, India, Ireland, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and the United Kingdom—have laws regulating the conducting of military maneuvers and excluding certain areas, such as schools, from encampments or other related interferences.
Corporal punishment causes serious harm to children, impinges on the right to education, and should be banned by law in all contexts. Corporal punishment violates children’s rights to dignity, bodily integrity, and the prohibition against cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment. Countries began to ban corporal punishment in the 1970s, as research showed it not only failed to improve children’s behavior but was also linked to increases in suicidal thoughts, anxiety, aggression, criminality, and other harms that impact the right to education. These include school avoidance and drop-outs, as well as difficulty with concentration, cognitive problems, and increased aggression in school. Medical associations have called for the abolition of corporal punishment on the basis that it harms students’ school achievement.
As of December 2022, 65 countries have banned corporal punishment of children in all contexts, but this practice remains widespread in some countries and regions, including the Middle East and North Africa, where only two countries have banned it completely. Partial bans on corporal punishment in schools have not been effective in countries like Lebanon, where students told Human Rights Watch that teachers pulled their hair and ears; hit and slapped them; whipped them on the hands, feet, and faces with implements including electrical cables, rubber hoses, and thick wooden sticks; slammed their heads into school desks; and shoved them into the walls of classrooms or corridors. One child’s tooth was broken after a teacher hit him in the face with a stick.
Migrant, Asylum Seeker, and Refugee Education
States should explicitly incorporate into domestic law the right to quality, formal education without discrimination for all children, including migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees, and make this right enforceable. Treaty bodies affirm that “all children in the context of international migration, irrespective of status, shall have full access to all levels and all aspects of education … on the basis of equality with nationals of the country where those children are living.” States collectively pledged in 2015 to ensure education for all children by 2030, explicitly including migrant and refugee children, and all parties to the Global Compact on Refugees agreed that host countries should ensure refugee children’s access to formal education within three months of arrival.
Yet displaced children are facing an education crisis. Education data are not available for all forcibly displaced children, who number more than 41 million worldwide, but half of the 8 million children whom the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) classifies as refugees are out of school. Obstacles to education for refugee and migrant children include poverty and overstretched resources in host countries, and humanitarian donors and agencies have important roles in ensuring the right to education. However, Human Rights Watch research in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Greece, and Bangladesh has found that government policy barriers to education are key drivers of the education crisis facing displaced children, and UN reports have identified policy barriers to refugee education in other Asian and European countries.
High Quality Inclusive Education Systems for People with Disabilities
Many countries around the world still exclude people with disabilities, including children, from the mainstream general education system, or fail to provide adequate support for them to be meaningfully included. Human Rights Watch research in Kyrgyzstan, Iran, South Africa, and Lebanon, among other countries, has shown failures in inclusion for people with disabilities in the general education system.
International human rights law obligates states to guarantee education for children with disabilities in the general education system. Specifically, governments should ensure that “people with disabilities are not excluded from the general education system on the basis of disability, and that children with disabilities are not excluded from free and compulsory primary education, or from secondary education, on the basis of disability.” The obligation to provide primary education for all children is an immediate duty of all states. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) also specifies that persons with disabilities have the right to access education on an equal basis with others, meaning without discrimination. That right applies irrespectively of the provider of all education, public and private.
The CRPD Committee notes that the convention prohibits the exclusion of persons with disabilities from the general education system, including through any legislative or regulatory provision that limits their inclusion on “the basis of their impairment or the degree of that impairment.”
An inclusive education system should focus on the full and effective participation, accessibility, attendance, and achievement of all students, especially those who are at risk of being excluded or marginalized. The education system should provide an individualized educational response, rather than expecting the student to fit the system. All teachers and other staff should receive education and training to accommodate inclusive learning environments, including the “universal design for learning” approach.
To realize the right to inclusive education, the CRPD obligates states to ensure “reasonable accommodation,” defined as the “necessary and appropriate modification and adjustments” that would ensure people with disabilities the enjoyment of all human rights and freedoms on an equal basis with others. Denial of reasonable accommodation constitutes discrimination.
Teenage Pregnancy and Access to Education
Each year, tens of thousands of adolescent girls drop out of school or experience discrimination and exclusion because they are pregnant, married, or are mothers. Pregnancy is both a barrier to girls continuing their education and often a consequence of girls dropping out of school. Studies have shown that the longer a girl stays in school, the less likely she is to be married as a child or become pregnant during her teenage years.
Most countries in Africa have laws, policies, or measures that protect adolescent girls’ education during pregnancy and motherhood. Some of them recently overturned negative policies. Niger repealed in 2019 an order that temporarily excluded girls who became pregnant and permanently expelled married students from school, and replaced it with a new policy that explicitly protects their right to education.
However, in nearly one-third of African countries, adolescent girls who are pregnant face significant legal and policy barriers to continuing their formal education. Many countries lack adequate policies or have even adopted punitive or discriminatory measures against them. Several also lack or have inadequate policies to prevent and manage adolescent pregnancies, undermining children’s right to sexual and reproductive rights, including the right to comprehensive sexuality education.
Some African countries, such as Morocco and Algeria, impose “morality” based penalties and punishments on girls who are reported to have had sexual relationships outside of marriage, thereby interfering with girls’ right to education. Girls and women with children born outside of marriage are often perceived as bringing dishonor to their families. They might not be allowed or able to stay in school since they would be exposed to public ridicule and social stigma.
Other African governments have adopted measures that are insufficient to ensure access to education for girls. Tanzania, which reversed a discriminatory school ban against pregnant students or young mothers in November 2021, has not removed regulations that allow schools to expel students who have “committed an offense against morality” or “entered into wedlock.”
Governments should adopt human rights-compliant education policies that guarantee that students who are pregnant or parenting are allowed to remain in school for as long as they choose; able to resume their education free from complex processes for withdrawal and re-enrollment; and supported to complete their education in school environments free from stigma and discrimination and to receive adequate social and financial support to stay in school.
Comprehensive Sexuality Education
Ensuring that all children and youth have access to comprehensive sexuality education is central to realizing the right to education, as well as the rights to health, information, and privacy, among others. According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), comprehensive sexuality education is “a curriculum-based process of teaching and learning about the cognitive, emotional, physical and social aspects of sexuality.” It provides children and adolescents with medically accurate, developmentally appropriate, rights-based, and inclusive information to make informed and safer decisions about their health.
Through comprehensive sexuality education, adolescents can better understand their bodies, take steps to prevent and treat sexually transmitted infections (STIs), understand how to access reproductive health services, including contraception and safe abortion care, understand their and others’ sexual orientation and gender identity, build healthy and respectful relationships, and understand consent. A strong body of research has shown that curriculum-based sexuality education programs increase knowledge and improve attitudes related to sexual and reproductive health. These programs also contribute to increased communication with parents about sexual activity; increased use of condoms and contraception; and other positive practices. Access to comprehensive information on sexual and reproductive health can save lives and reduce preventable deaths, including deaths from cancers associated with the human papillomavirus (HPV).
Yet schools around the world are failing to provide this critical information to young people. A 2021 UNESCO global status report found that while 85 percent of the 155 countries it reviewed had laws or policies related to sexuality education, many lacked strong implementation and comprehensive curricula.
Human Rights Watch research in countries such as the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Japan, Poland, Senegal, Tanzania, the United States, and Vietnam has shown how abstinence-based, stigmatizing, discriminatory, regressive, or otherwise inadequate sexuality education has contributed to a range of human rights problems, including unintended adolescent pregnancy; unsafe abortion; delays in accessing preventive health care; school-related sexual violence; attacks on human rights defenders; and bullying and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) students.
Human Rights Watch has observed anti-gender movements attempting to block or oppose comprehensive sexuality education in many parts of the world, including in Brazil and Poland, among others. Opposition to sexuality education is often rooted in harmful, stigmatizing, patriarchal, or homophobic and anti-LGBT beliefs—sometimes presented as so-called family or cultural values, national traditions, or efforts to “protect” society. It is also often linked to broader efforts to limit the right to freedom of expression and space for a diverse, vibrant civil society or to otherwise restrict civil and political rights.
All governments should take measures to increase education on sexual and reproductive health and to combat the stigma around adolescent sexuality, including through national and local campaigns designed by and involving young people, including those who are out of school. Governments should also implement mandatory comprehensive sexuality education that complies with international standards and is scientifically accurate, rights-based, and age-appropriate, and ensure that the curriculum reaches students from an early age and builds incrementally to equip them with developmentally relevant information about their health and well-being. Governments should ensure that teachers are adequately trained to teach this curriculum, and schools provide safe spaces for children and adolescents to discuss issues in a confidential, non-stigmatizing manner. Authorities should also stop targeting those ensuring provision of comprehensive sexuality education, both inside and outside of schools.
Children’s Privacy in Online Education
In a global investigation of 163 education technology (EdTech) products endorsed by the world’s most populous countries for children’s education during the Covid-19 pandemic, Human Rights Watch found that the vast majority of these EdTech websites and apps did or could secretly surveil children. Some harvested data on who children were, where they were, and who their family and friends were. Others surveilled children using invasive techniques that were impossible to avoid or eliminate without destroying the child’s device.
Most EdTech products sent or granted access to children’s data to advertising technology companies. Some companies used this data to target children with personalized content and advertisements that followed them across the internet, which distorted children’s online experiences and risked influencing their opinions and beliefs.
These data surveillance practices are neither proportionate nor necessary for EdTech platforms to function or to deliver online learning.
Governments should pass and enforce comprehensive child data protection laws that would provide children with special protection in educational settings, where they cannot meaningfully consent to how their privacy is handled.
 Only two global treaties explicitly reference education prior to primary school. The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, art. 10(a), obligates states to ensure equality for girls “in pre-school.” The Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, art. 30, states that access to “public pre-school educational institutions” should not be denied due to the parents’ or child’s “irregular situation with respect to stay.” Moreover, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), art. 24, requires states to “ensure an inclusive education system at all levels.” A review of 264 concluding observations by the ICESCR, CRC, and CRPD’s monitoring committees for 152 countries between 2015 and 2020, found that all three expect states to provide affordable, accessible, quality early childhood care and education that is inclusive and non-discriminatory, with adequate financial, technical, and human resources. Sandra Fredman, Georgina Donati and others, “The Right to Early Childhood Education as a Human Rights in International Law,” Human Rights Law Review, vol. 22(4), December 2022.
 However, in 2001, the CRC Committee began calling on countries to “rationalize,” or make more efficient, user fees in secondary education (CRCC, CO: Tanzania (2001) CRC/C/108, 409; CO: Kenya (2001) CRC/C/111, 135), and in 2002 it recommended the extension of resources to help children get secondary education (CRCC, CO: Gabon (2002) CRC/C/114, 230(e); CO: Malawi (2002) CRC/C/114, 435(f): CO: Antilles (2002) CRC/C/118, 576(c)). By 2003 it was calling for the adoption of time-bound action plans to eliminate charges for secondary education (CRCC, CO: Republic of Korea (2003) CRC/C/15/Add.197, 53(b); see also CESCR, CO: Republic of Korea (2001) E/C.12/1/Add.59, 42) and “possibly” working towards making secondary school free for all children (CRCC, CO: Romania (2003) CRC/C/15/Add.199, 53(b)). In 2004 it recommended allocating financial and human resources to promote secondary education “with a view to universal coverage” (CRCC, CO: Panama (2004) CRC/C/140, 145(b)), and in 2005 it called for sufficient funding to ensure free education at all levels of secondary education (CRCC, CO: Bolivia (2005) CRC/C/146, 647(a)). In 2016, the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities interpreted the CRPD's provision that “persons with disabilities can access an inclusive, quality and free primary education and secondary education on an equal basis with others” in line with the Sustainable Development Goals to mean that states “must progressively adopt measures to ensure that all children, including children with disabilities, complete free, equitable, and quality secondary education” (CRPD Committee, GC No 4, “The right to inclusive education” (2016) CRPD/C/GC/4, para 29; cf UN Secretary-General, “Ad Hoc Committee on a Comprehensive and Integral International Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Rights and Dignity of Persons with Disabilities” (2005) A/60/266, 37).
 See Human Rights Watch, “Education” www.hrw.org/topic/childrens-rights/education; see also Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRCC), General Comment No. 20 ‘Implementation of the rights of the child during adolescence’ (2016) CRC/C/GC/20 para 71; and Special Rapporteur on the right to education, “The promotion of equality of opportunity in education” (2011) A/HRC/17/29 paras. 56–58.
 Alison Earle and others, “Is Free Pre-Primary Education Associated with Increased Primary School Completion? A Global Study” (2018) 12(13) International Journal of Child Care and Education Policy; and Jo Becker, Campaigning for Children: Strategies for Advancing Children's Rights (2017) pp. 133–48.
 Bede Sheppard, “It's Time to Expand the Right to Education,” Nordic Journal of Human Rights, vol. 50, 2022, https://www.tandfonline.com/share/WHDIPKG5WMTYX9PIIJWY?target=10.1080/18918131.2022.2071401.
 Special Rapporteur on the right to education, A/77/324, September 2, 2022, https://undocs.org/Home/Mobile?FinalSymbol=A%2F77%2F324&Language=E&DeviceType=Desktop&LangRequested=False.
 “Tashkent Declaration and Commitments to Action for Transforming Early Childhood Care and Education,” November 16, 2022, https://euimg.vfairs.com/uploads/vjfnew/10000082/content/files/1668595494tashkent-declaration-en-pdf1668595494.pdf.
 Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack, “Education Under Attack: 2022,” 2022, https://protectingeducation.org/wp-content/uploads/eua_2022.pdf.
 Safe Schools Declaration, 2015, https://www.regjeringen.no/en/topics/foreign-affairs/development-cooperation/safeschools_declaration/id2460245/.
 Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack, “Practical Impact of the Safe Schools Declaration: Fact Sheet,” January 2022, http://protectingeducation.org/wp-content/uploads/documents/SSD-Fact-Sheet.pdf.
 Military Manual on the Law of the Danish Armed Forces in International Military Operations, September 2016, pp. 45, 115, & 154.
 Armed Forces of Ecuador, Manual of International Humanitarian Law, DBM-DOC-CC.FF.AA-05-2016, May 2016, Chapter VIII, sec. D.
 New Zealand Defence Force, Manual of Armed Forces Law: Law of Armed Conflict, DM 69 (2 ed), Volume 4, January 8, 2019.
 Swiss Armed Forces Manual on the Law of Armed Conflict, May 1, 2019.
 United Kingdom Ministry of Defence, Joint Service Manual of the Law of Armed Conflict, Joint Service Publication 383 (2004), secs. 15.18 & 15.18.1.
 Italy: Policy Commitments 207055 and 207069, World Humanitarian Summit, 2016; Luxembourg: Policy Commitment 213039, World Humanitarian Summit, 2016; and Slovenia: Letter from Darja Bavdaž Kuret, State Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Slovenia, to Norway’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway, 12 April 2016.
 General Commander of the Military Forces, order of July 6, 2010, official document Number 2010124005981 / CGFM-CGING-25.11; see also Yenys Osuna Montes v. the Mayor of Zambrano Municipality, SU-256/99, Constitutional Court, April 21, 1999; and Wilson Pinzón and others v. the Mayor of La Calera, T-1206/01, Constitutional Court of Colombia, November 16, 2001.
 Speech by Ms. Ine Eriksen Søreide, Minister of Defence, Norway, at the Oslo Conference on Safe Schools, May 29, 2015, Report of the Oslo Conference on Safe Schools, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Oslo, Norway, 2015, p. 19; Letter Directive from Ministry of Defence to the Norwegian Armed Forces and the Norwegian Defense University Estates, unofficial translation, 2015.
 Spain Ministry of Defence, National Defence Directive 2020, June 2020.
 United Kingdom Ministry for Defence, Human Security in Military Operations, Part 1: Directive, JSP 1325, v. 1.0, January 2019, secs. 3:14, 6:1, 6:13, & 6:19-22; see also Army, “Human Security: The Military Contribution,” Doctrine Note 16/02, June 2016, sec. 4-4 – 4-5.
 Philippines, Republic Act 11188, An Act Providing for the Special Protection of Children in Situations of Armed Conflict and Providing Penalties for Violations Thereof, January 10, 2019, secs. 5 & 9. See also Rules and Regulations Implementing Republic Act No. 11188, Otherwise Known as “The Special Protection of Children in Situations of Armed Conflict,” May 2019; and Department of Education, National Policy Framework on Learners and Schools as Zones of Peace, DepEd Order No. 032 s. 2019, November 11, 2019.
 Child Protection Code for the Central African Republic, Law Number 20,016, June 15, 2020, art. 180.
 Bangladesh, The Manoeuvres, Field Firing and Artillery Practice Act, Act No. 5 of 1938, March 12, 1938, art. 3; see also Acquisition and Requisition of Immovable Property Ordinance, April 13, 1982, art. 18(1).
 India, Manoeuvres, Field Firing and Artillery Practice Act, Act No. V of 1938, March 12, 1938, art. 3; see also Requisitioning and Acquisition of Immovable Property Act, Act No. 30 of 1952, March 14, 1952, art. 3; Inqualabi Nauzwan Sabha and others v. The State of Bihar, C.W.J.C. No. 4787 of 1999, High Court of Patna, order of January 2, 2001; Paschim Medinipur Bhumij Kalyan Samiti v. West Bengal, W.P. No. 16442(W) of 2009, High Court at Calcutta, judgment of November 24, 2009; Exploitation of Children in Orphanages in the State of Tamil Nadu v. Union of India and others, W.P. (Criminal) No. 102 of 2007, order of September 1, 2010; Exploitation of Children in Orphanages in the State of Tamil Nadu v. Union of India and others, W.P. (Criminal) No. 102 of 2007, order of March 7, 2011; Nandini Sundar and others v. The State of Chhattisgarh, W.P. (Civil) No. 250 of 2007, Supreme Court of India, order of January 18, 2011; Nandini Sundar and others v. The State of Chhattisgarh, W.P. (Civil) No. 250 of 2007, Supreme Court of India, judgment of July 5, 2011; and Nandini Sundar and others v. The State of Chhattisgarh, W.P. (Civil) No. 250 of 2007, Supreme Court of India, order of November 18, 2011.
 Ireland, Defence Act, Number 18 of 1954, arts. 269 & 270.
 Malaysia, Military Manoeuvres Act, December 28, 1983, arts. 2, 7.
 Pakistan, Manoeuvres, Field Firing and Artillery Practice Act, Act No. V of 1938, March 12, 1938, art. 3.
 Singapore, Military Manouevures Act, September 16, 1963, as revised December 31, 2014, art. 3.
 Sri Lanka, Firing Ranges and Military Training Act, August 13, 1951, art. 6.
 United Kingdom, Manoeuvres Act, 7 Elizabeth 2, Ch. 7, December 18, 1958, art. 2; see also Archie Hamilton, Minister of State for the Armed Forces, House of Commons Debate, vol. 186 c68W, February 18, 1991: “There is no statutory definition of the term ‘military manoeuvre,’ but in common service usage the term would be used to describe the strategic or tactical movement of a military force.”
 For selected references, see Human Rights Watch, A Violent Education: Corporal Punishment of Children in US Public Schools (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2008), https://www.hrw.org/report/2008/08/19/violent-education/corporal-punishment-children-us-public-schools#_ftnref461, at footnote 461.
 US Society for Adolescent Medicine, Position Paper: Corporal Punishment in Schools, 32:5 J. Adolescent Health 385, 388 (2003).
 Ronald Sege, “AAP policy opposes corporal punishment, draws on recent evidence,” American Academy of Pediatrics, November 5, 2018, https://publications.aap.org/aapnews/news/6955?autologincheck=redirected.
 UK Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, “Position statement on corporal punishment,” November 2009; Australian Psychological Society, “Punishment and Behavior Change,” Legislative Questions, No. 0293, October 1996.
 End Violence Against Children, “Mauritius prohibits all corporal punishment of children, strengthens measures for online safety,” December 11, 2022, https://www.end-violence.org/articles/mauritius-prohibits-all-corporal-punishment-children-strengthens-measures-online-safety.
 Human Rights Watch, “Corporal Punishment of Children: Human Rights Watch’s Index for the Middle East and North Africa,” Human Rights Watch Index, May 10, 2021, https://features.hrw.org/features/features/corporal-punishment-of-children/index.html.
 Human Rights Watch, “I Don’t Want My Child to Be Beaten”: Corporal Punishment in Schools (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2019), https://www.hrw.org/report/2019/05/13/i-dont-want-my-child-be-beaten/corporal-punishment-lebanons-schools.
 See Convention on the Rights of the Child (arts. 28, 29), International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR, art. 13), International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (art. 5), Convention against Discrimination in Education, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, and Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the 1960 UNESCO Convention against Discrimination in Education (art. 3(e)).
 UN Committee on the Rights of the Child and UN Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, Joint General Comment No. 4 (2017), para. 23.
 UN Sustainable Development Goal 4, 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
 United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Global Compact on Refugees, 2018, https://www.unhcr.org/5c658aed4, paragraph 68.
 UNHCR, Global Trends: Forced Displacement in 2021, 2022, https://www.unhcr.org/en-us/publications/brochures/62a9d1494/global-trends-report-2021.html.
 Human Rights Watch, “When I Picture My Future, I See Nothing”: Barriers to Education for Syrian Refugee Children in Turkey (New York: Human Rights Watch, November 2015), https://www.hrw.org/report/2015/11/08/when-i-picture-my-future-i-see-nothing/barriers-education-syrian-refugee-children; “Turkey: Education Barriers for Asylum Seekers,” Human Rights Watch news release, May 31, 2017, https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/05/31/turkey-education-barriers-asylum-seekers.
“Growing Up Without an Education”: Barriers to Education for Syrian Refugee Children in Lebanon (New York: Human Rights Watch, July 2016), https://www.hrw.org/report/2016/07/19/growing-without-education/barriers-education-syrian-refugee-children-lebanon.
 “We’re Afraid for Their Future”: Barriers to Education for Syrian Refugee Children in Jordan (New York: Human Rights Watch, August 2016), https://www.hrw.org/report/2016/08/16/were-afraid-their-future/barriers-education-syrian-refugee-children-jordan; “I Want to Continue to Study”: Barriers to Secondary Education for Syrian Refugee Children in Jordan (New York: Human Rights Watch, June 2020), https://www.hrw.org/report/2020/06/26/i-want-continue-study/barriers-secondary-education-syrian-refugee-children-jordan.
 “Without Education They Lose Their Future”: Denial of Education to Child Asylum Seekers on the Greek Islands (New York: Human Rights Watch, July 2018), https://www.hrw.org/report/2018/07/18/without-education-they-lose-their-future/denial-education-child-asylum-seekers.
 “Are We Not Human?”: Denial of Education for Rohingya Refugee Children in Bangladesh (New York: Human Rights Watch, December 2019), https://www.hrw.org/report/2019/12/03/are-we-not-human/denial-education-rohingya-refugee-children-bangladesh.
 For more Human Rights Watch research on refugee education, see “Letter to European Commission re. Access to Secondary Education for Syrian Refugee Children,” May 18, 2020, https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/05/18/letter-european-commission-re-access-secondary-education-syrian-refugee-children; “Greece: Stop Denying Refugee Children Education,” news release, July 29, 2021, https://www.hrw.org/news/2021/07/29/greece-stop-denying-refugee-children-education; “Bangladesh: Rohingya Refugee Students Expelled,” news release, April 1, 2019, https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/04/01/bangladesh-rohingya-refugee-students-expelled; “Bangladesh: Officials Threaten Rohingya for Setting up Schools,” news release, March 21, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/03/21/bangladesh-officials-threaten-rohingya-setting-schools; and “Letters to humanitarian donor governments on education for Rohingya refugee children in Bangladesh,” April 19, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/04/19/letters-humanitarian-donor-governments-education-rohingya-refugee-children.
 UNHCR, “Closing the Gap: Asia Education Update,” October 2020, https://www.unhcr.org/asia/5f97afcb4; UNHCR, UNICEF, IOM, “Access to education for refugee and migrant children in Europe”, September 2019, https://reliefweb.int/report/world/access-education-refugee-and-migrant-children-europe-september-2019.
 Human Rights Watch, Insisting on Inclusion: Institutionalization and Barriers to Education for Children with Disabilities in Kyrgyzstan (New York: Human Rights Watch, December 2020), https://www.hrw.org/node/377212.
 Human Rights Watch, “Just Like Other Kids”: Lack of Access to Inclusive Quality Education for Children with Disabilities in Iran (New York: Human Rights Watch, October 2019), https://www.hrw.org/report/2019/10/02/just-other-kids/lack-access-inclusive-quality-education-children-disabilities.
 Human Rights Watch, “Complicit in Exclusion”: South Africa’s Failure to Guarantee an Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities (New York: Human Rights Watch, August 2015), https://www.hrw.org/report/2015/08/18/complicit-exclusion/south-africas-failure-guarantee-inclusive-education-children.
 Human Rights Watch, “I Would Like to Go to School”: Barriers to Education for Children with Disabilities in Lebanon (New York: Human Rights Watch, March 2018), https://www.hrw.org/report/2018/03/22/i-would-go-school/barriers-education-children-disabilities-lebanon.
 Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), arts. 7 and 24.
 CRPD, art. 24(2a).
 UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, General Comment No. 13: The right to education (article 13 of the Covenant), U.N. Doc. E/C.12/1999/10 (1999), para. 51.
 CRPD, art. 24(2)(b).
 CRPD Committee, General Comment No. 4: The right to inclusive education, U.N. Doc. CRPD/C/GC/4, 2016, para. 23.
 Ibid., para. 18.
 CRPD, art. 24(1), and CRPD Committee, General Comment No. 4: The right to inclusive education, paras. 8 and 9.
 CRPD Committee, General Comment No. 4: The right to inclusive education, para. 12(c).
 Ibid., para. 26.
 CRPD, art. 2. Governments cannot allege a disproportionate and undue burden to evade the obligation to provide reasonable accommodation to ensure inclusive education. CRPD Committee, General Comment No. 4: The right to inclusive education, para. 18.
 United Nations Population Fund, Worlds Apart: reproductive health and rights in an age of inequality, 2017, the State of World Population 2017, https://www.unfpa.org/sites/default/files/sowp/downloads/UNFPA_PUB_2017_EN_SWOP.pdf.
 Kaem Kapalata Machozi and Mariama Mamoudou Djibo, “New Niger Order Protects Girls’ Rights to Education,” Interview, Human Rights Watch, August 30, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/08/30/interview-new-niger-order-protects-girls-rights-education.
 “Across Africa, Many Young Mothers Face Education Barriers,” Human Rights Watch news release, August 30, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/08/30/across-africa-many-young-mothers-face-education-barriers.
 Morocco Penal Code, arts. 490-493, available at “A Brighter Future: Empowering Pregnant Girls and Adolescent Mothers to Stay in School,” Human Rights Watch index, https://www.hrw.org/video-photos/interactive/2022/08/29/brighter-future-empowering-pregnant-girls-and-adolescent.
 Penal Code of Algeria, art. 339, available at “A Brighter Future: Empowering Pregnant Girls and Adolescent Mothers to Stay in School.”
 University of Bergen et al, “Sudan Report - Girls, Child Marriage, and Education in Red Sea State, Sudan: Perspectives on Girls’ Freedom to Choose,” September 2017, https://www.cmi.no/publications/file/6326-girls-child-marriage.pdf (accessed April 21, 2018); Ghalia Kadiri, “Etre mére célibataire au Maroc, un long calvaire,” Le Monde, March 16, 2018, http://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2018/03/16/etre-mere-celibataire-au-maroc-un-long-calvaire_5272277_3212.html (accessed April 20, 2018); Abdelkadir Remal, “Algérie: le drame des meres célibataires,” L’Expression, May 14, 2006, https://abdelkadirremal.wordpress.com/2014/01/23/algerie-le-drame-des-meres-celibataires/ (accessed April 19, 2018); Roudi-Fahimi, F. and El Feki, S., “Facts of life: Youth sexuality and reproductive health in the Middle East and North Africa,” Population Reference Bureau, https://www.prb.org/resources/facts-of-life-youth-sexuality-and-reproductive-health-in-the-middle-east-and-north-africa/ (accessed May 8, 2018).
 Tayla Hall, “Tanzania Allows Teenage Mothers to Be Back in School,” Human Rights Watch, April 1, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/04/01/tanzania-allows-teenage-mothers-be-back-school.
 Government of the Republic of Tanzania, “Education (Expulsion and Exclusion of Pupils from Schools) Regulations,” G.N. No. 295 0f 2002, art. 4(b) – (c) (copy on file with Human Rights Watch).
 United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), International technical guidance on sexuality education: An evidence-informed approach, revised edition, (New York: UNFPA, 2018), http://www.unaids.org/en/resources/documents/2018/international-technical-guidance-on-sexuality-education (accessed January 3, 2023), pp. 16-20.
 Ibid., pp. 28-31.
 Ibid., pp. 28-31.
 Human Rights Watch, “It Wasn’t Really Safety, It Was Shame”: Young People, Sexual Health Education, and HPV in Alabama (New York: Human Rights Watch, July 2020), https://www.hrw.org/report/2020/07/08/it-wasnt-really-safety-it-was-shame/young-people-sexual-health-education-and-hpv.
 UNESCO, The journey towards comprehensive sexuality education: Global status report, (Paris: UNESCO, 2021), https://www.unfpa.org/publications/journey-towards-comprehensive-sexuality-education-global-status-report (accessed January 3, 2023).
 Human Rights Watch, “I Felt Like the World Was Falling Down on Me”: Adolescent Girls’ Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in the Dominican Republic (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2019), https://www.hrw.org/report/2019/06/18/i-felt-world-was-falling-down-me/adolescent-girls-sexual-and-reproductive-health.
 Human Rights Watch, “It’s a Constant Fight”: School-Related Sexual Violence and Young Survivors’ Struggle for Justice in Ecuador (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2020), https://www.hrw.org/report/2020/12/09/its-constant-fight/school-related-sexual-violence-and-young-survivors-struggle.
 Human Rights Watch, “The Nail That Sticks Out Gets Hammered Down”: LGBT Bullying and Exclusion in Japanese Schools (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2016), https://www.hrw.org/report/2016/05/05/nail-sticks-out-gets-hammered-down/lgbt-bullying-and-exclusion-japanese-schools.
 Human Rights Watch, “The Breath of the Government on My Back”: Attacks on Women’s Rights in Poland (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2019), https://www.hrw.org/report/2019/02/06/breath-government-my-back/attacks-womens-rights-poland.
 Human Rights Watch, “It’s Not Normal”: Sexual Exploitation, Harassment and Abuse in Secondary Schools in Senegal (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2018), https://www.hrw.org/report/2018/10/18/its-not-normal/sexual-exploitation-harassment-and-abuse-secondary-schools-senegal.
 Human Rights Watch, “I Had a Dream to Finish School”: Barriers to Secondary Education in Tanzania (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2017), https://www.hrw.org/report/2017/02/14/i-had-dream-finish-school/barriers-secondary-education-tanzania.
 Human Rights Watch, “It Wasn’t Really Safety, It Was Shame”: Young People, Sexual Health Education, and HPV in Alabama (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2020), https://www.hrw.org/report/2020/07/08/it-wasnt-really-safety-it-was-shame/young-people-sexual-health-education-and-hpv.
 Human Rights Watch, “My Teacher Said I Had a Disease”: Barriers to the Right to Education for LGBT Youth in Vietnam (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2020), https://www.hrw.org/report/2020/02/13/my-teacher-said-i-had-disease/barriers-right-education-lgbt-youth-vietnam.
 Human Rights Watch, “I Became Scared, This Was Their Goal”: Efforts to Ban Gender and Sexuality Education in Brazil (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2022), https://www.hrw.org/report/2022/05/12/i-became-scared-was-their-goal/efforts-ban-gender-and-sexuality-education-brazil.
 “Poland: Veto Bill Targeting Sex Ed,” Human Rights Watch news release, December 8, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/12/09/poland-veto-bill-targeting-sex-ed.
 See, for example, Mauricio Albarracín-Caballero (Human Rights Watch), “How Targeting LGBTQ+ Rights Are Part of the Authoritarian Playbook,” commentary, Advocate, September 6, 2022, https://www.hrw.org/news/2022/09/06/how-targeting-lgbtq-rights-are-part-authoritarian-playbook.
 Human Rights Watch, “How Dare They Peep into My Private Life?”: Children’s Rights Violations by Governments that Endorsed Online Learning during the Covid-19 Pandemic (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2022), https://www.hrw.org/report/2022/05/25/how-dare-they-peep-my-private-life/childrens-rights-violations-governments.
 Ibid., chapter 3.
 The United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child has emphasized that any digital surveillance of children, together with any associated automated processing of their data, should not be conducted routinely, indiscriminately, or without the child’s knowledge or, in the case of very young children, that of their parent or caregiver. Moreover, it should not take place “without the right to object to such surveillance, in… educational and care settings,” and “consideration should always be given to the least privacy-intrusive means available to fulfil the desired purpose.” Any restriction upon a child’s privacy is only permissible if it meets the standards of legality, necessity, and proportionality. See United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child, General Comment No. 25 on Children’s Rights in Relation to the Digital Environment, U.N. Doc. CRC/C/GC/25 (2021), para. 75; UN Human Rights Council, Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on the right to privacy in the digital age, A/HRC/27/37, June 30, 2014, para. 23; UN Human Rights Council, “Resolution adopted by the Human Rights Council on 23 March 2017,” Resolution 34/7, A/HRC/RES/34/7, para. 2; CRC, General Comment No. 1, (2001), Article 29(1): The Aims of Education, CRC/GC/2001/1 (2001).
 The Council of Europe noted, “[A]s the education is compulsory and refusal or withdrawal of consent could be detrimental to the development of the child, children would not be in a position to consent freely, irrespective of the assistance by parents or legal representatives.” See “Contribution prepared by the Secretariat of the Council of Europe on the subject of the right to privacy of children, in response to the consultation carried out by the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy (UNSRP),” October 5, 2020, https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Privacy/SR_Privacy/privacy-child/Regional-Org-and-UN/1-CoE.docx (accessed August 3, 2021), pp. 3, 4.