Consultant for the development of Safety and Security Governance Structure and Tools for UNRWA Education Institutions

Consultancy - Terms of Reference

UNRWA is a United Nations agency established by the General Assembly in 1949 and is mandated to provide assistance and protection to a population of some 5 million registered Palestine refugees. Its mission is to help Palestine refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and the Gaza Strip to achieve their full potential in human development, pending a just solution to their plight. UNRWA’s services encompass education, health care, relief and social services, camp infrastructure and improvement, microfinance and emergency assistance. UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions.

Consultant for the development of Safety and Security Governance Structure and Tools for UNRWA Education Institutions

Background:

UNRWA has been an important provider of education to Palestine refugees in times of stability and crisis for nearly 70 years. Access to education, even during times of emergency, is crucial as it provides a sense of normalcy to the students, the education staff and the community and hope for the future. Despite a challenging operational context of an ongoing 11-year blockade on Gaza, occupation-related issues in the West Bank, a devastating conflict in Syria, high poverty rates and limited employment opportunities in Lebanon, and high poverty levels in Jordan, UNRWA has continued to deliver education in times of emergencies through introducing innovations in its existing education system.

While the operating context for UNRWA schools is diverse, there has been a growing struggle across all of the UNRWA Fields to protect education from attacks. This includes: physical attacks on students and staff (including explosions and shootings leading to injuries and deaths); harassment or violence that prevents children and staff from safely reaching schools; armed search operations within schools and the arrest and detention of staff and students; occupation or military use of schools; demolition of school buildings; damage to schools during armed conflict; and the forced closure of schools. These threats to education have been especially marked in Syria, Gaza, the West Bank and Lebanon. As documented in the UNRWA “Schools on the Frontline” report (May 2016), 44 per cent of UNRWA’s 692 schools – 302 in total – have been directly impacted by conflict and violence over the last five years. Such attacks on education can impede student attendance and enrolment, inhibit learning, diminish the quality of education, and reduce the numbers qualified teachers. They obstruct Palestine refugee children’s right to education, hindering long-term development.

The Department of Education, recognizing that the Fields are affected by a number of security risks that impact on access to quality education for Palestine refugee children and youth, intends to continue to collaborate closely with the Department for Security and Risk Management (DSRM), as well as other relevant Departments at UNRWA, with regard to addressing these risks. Ensuring the safety and security of UNRWA schools is a key element of the UNRWA education programme and in particular its Education in Emergencies (EiE) approach.

The UNRWA EiE approach builds on the strengths of the UNRWA education system while introducing innovative approaches to ensure the continuity of quality education in times of crisis. Education in emergencies to UNRWA means doing things differently: i.e. delivering education in alternative ways, through self-learning materials, interactive learning games, UNRWA TV and safe learning spaces; doing more of other things: i.e. more psychosocial support to children with additional counsellors and teacher training as well as stronger community engagement; and doing things that had not been the focus before: i.e. safety and security training for students, staff and parents. Through the EiE approach UNRWA works to mitigate security risks that might endanger students and staff, maintain access to education, and foster a school environment that is conducive to learning and that promotes student and staff psychosocial wellbeing.

As part of this EiE approach, UNRWA worked to address safety and security challenges through the training of a number of education staff on safety and security (including teachers and School Principals), conducting a number of school risk assessments (SRAs), school evacuation drills, and introduced a capacity development programme consisting of 17-modules addressing key safety and security issues for education staff.

An external evaluation implemented in 2016 highlighted that areas related to safety and security were in need of further development. Specifically this was the need for further support from the Field Security and Risk Management (FSRM) offices for schools/education institutions in implementing SRAs and follow-up to ensure that the mitigating measures identified through SRAs are implemented at school level. The evaluation also highlighted the importance of enhanced student participation in safety and security preparation. Finally, the evaluation suggested the need to review and update the 17 safety and security training modules for education staff and their possible inclusion in UNRWA Education professional development programmes was raised.

Rationale for the Consultancy:

Given the volatile context of the UNRWA five Fields of operation, the need to invest in strengthening the preparedness of the UNRWA education system to prevent, respond, and mitigate safety and security related issues remains a priority. To institutionalize effective safety and security approaches, a draft Educational Technical Instruction (ETI) on Safety and Security was developed jointly between the Department of Security and Risk Management and the Department of Education in 2014. The ETI provides guidelines and a set of tools for education and security personnel including, but not limited to, an emergency planning and procedures guide, an evacuation procedures template, and a fire safety template. Recognizing that some time has lapsed since the latest draft of the ETI was developed, it is recommended that the ETI is now reviewed to ensure that the measures, roles and responsibilities remain appropriate and up-to-date, and to identify any gaps in the tools. The review should then lead to a finalized ETI on Safety and Security including:

  • Finalized Emergency Planning and Procedures Guide, and SOP for education institutions: An updated SOP tool will provide structured guidance for School Principals and security staff on developing and adopting security procedures, assigning staff responsibilities and implementing other measures necessary for addressing security-related risks, with emphasis on the participation of children and parents in the process. This will also include unifying the existing templates for evacuation procedures and fire safety.
  • A School/Education Institution Risk Assessment (SRA) tool to capture risks that may be idiosyncratic to school installations, school staff and students. It is also essential that the SRA tool includes a template to develop action plans for follow-up on SRAs, including responsibilities of Field staff to monitor the implementation of the action plans.
  • EiE Safety and Security Training Package: The EiE Safety and Security Training Package was developed in 2016 to better standardize survival knowledge and skills for education and security staff. The resource package, containing 17 modules, is intended to enhance the capacity of staff to put contingency plans in place for their schools and build understanding of their roles and responsibilities during times of emergency. The external evaluation of the EiE programme and the Education Department both recognize the need to revise the package.

Objectives of this Consultancy:

The objectives of the consultancy will therefore be to:

  1. Review and refine the existing policies and tools related to education institutions safety and security as set out above: i.e. ETI on safety and security, including the Emergency Planning and Procedures Guide, SOP and unified security templates, and SRA tool.
  2. Review and refine the 17-module Safety and Security training package ensuring a user-friendly package.

Consultancy Deliverables and Outputs:

A consultant with expertise relating to safety and security in education institutions during times of emergencies will be recruited. This consultant will lead a participatory approach for the review and development of the security policies and tools described above – one that builds on the experiences and knowledge of key security and education staff in the UNRWA five Fields.

The expected deliverables from this intervention are:

i. A revised ETI on Safety and Security, including:

· Emergency Planning and Procedures Guide and SOP for education institutions

· School/ Education Institution Risk Assessment (SRA) tool

· Education institutions security plan template

· A revised English (and Arabic) version of the S&S Training Package.

ii. Lead a workshop in Amman (August 2018) with key education and security staff from the five Fields to endorse the ETI and relevant tools, and prepare for roll out in the Field Offices.

Reporting Structure

The consultant will report to the Senior Education Programme Specialist and the Director of Education at HQ Amman, and will work in close collaboration with the Department of Security and Risk Management.

Essential Qualifications and Experience

  • Minimum Master’s degree in Social Sciences, Emergency Management or a related field;
  • Proven international expertise in safety and security in education institutions, including in situations of active conflict;
  • Track record of developing effective capacity development programmes on safety and security, or related issues;
  • Knowledge of and experience in application of security risk management methodology;
  • Experience in leading participatory approaches to safety and security;
  • Knowledge of the regional context and safety and security issues;
  • Excellent command of English (spoken and written), knowledge of Arabic an asset.

Competencies

  • Excellent planning, organization, and facilitation skills.

Condition of Service

  • The Consultant will be paid upon satisfactory completion of the contract and submission of deliverables. The payment will be divided into three tranches based on the completion of each of the deliverables;

  • The Consultant is expected to work for a limited consultancy during the period from 15 May 2018 to 15 September 2018. The Consultant is expected to work for a total number of 30 days, with at least 6 working days in Amman, Jordan in August 2018.

How to Apply

Applicants should submit a cover letter and CV or UN Personal History Form demonstrating clearly the knowledge and experience required to meet the consultancy requirements via consultancy@unrwa.org, indicating the title of this consultancy “Development of Safety and Security Tools for UNRWA Education Institutions” in the subject line of the message. The deadline for the submission of applications is 29 April 2018. Late applications will not be considered.

UNRWA is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from both women and men. UNRWA encourages applications from qualified and experienced female candidates. Only those applicants short-listed for interview will be contacted. UNRWA is a non-smoking environment.

How to apply:

How to Apply

Applicants should submit a cover letter and CV or UN Personal History Form demonstrating clearly the knowledge and experience required to meet the consultancy requirements via consultancy@unrwa.org, indicating the title of this consultancy “Development of Safety and Security Tools for UNRWA Education Institutions” in the subject line of the message. The deadline for the submission of applications is 29 April 2018. Late applications will not be considered.

UNRWA is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes applications from both women and men. UNRWA encourages applications from qualified and experienced female candidates. Only those applicants short-listed for interview will be contacted. UNRWA is a non-smoking environment.