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Education Above All Foundation welcomes France’s commitment to protect children affected by war and conflict

News and Press Release
Originally published

Education Above All (EAA), welcomes President Hollande’s announcement endorsing the Safe Schools Declaration, becoming the 58th country to demonstrate support

21st February

France has today become the latest country to endorse the Safe Schools Declaration (SSD), a series of common sense steps aimed at protecting students and teachers from attack in areas affected by war and conflict.

The declaration, created in 2015 and immediately endorsed by 37 countries around the world, is an opportunity to demonstrate a global commitment to education in areas of war and conflict.

France’s move to endorse the SSD should provide leadership to other EU member states and the Francophone Afrique community. France joins other countries from across Europe, South America and the Middle East to take a stand to protect education. Countries yet to sign-up include the UK, Germany and USA.

EAA defends and delivers quality education to the poorest and most marginalised children, youth and women around the world. EAA’s legal advocacy programme, Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict (PEIC), is a founding member of the Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack (GCPEA) the organisation that has advocated for the Safe Schools Declaration.

GCPEA brings together leading organisations including; PEIC, UNICEF, UNESCO, Save the Children and Human Rights Watch to promote education as a basic human right and the driver of human development.

Maleiha Malik, Academic Advisor for PEIC said:

"Attacks on students and their schools in conflicts must stop now. We are heartened that France has signed up to the Safe Schools Declaration, joining more than 50 other countries to deliver this united message.

"It is only by working together that we can protect students and their teachers from further attacks. Education is the driver of human potential and a universal human right. It drives stability and prosperity and lays the foundations for peace. We urge all governments to join France and others to make our global voice stronger.

"It is time for the international community to join the 58 countries across the world and stand up and support the Safe Schools Declaration."


Education Above All (EAA)

• Education Above All (EAA) is a global initiative founded in 2012 by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar.

  • It aims to build a global movement which fosters development, with a particular focus on areas affected by poverty, conflict and disaster, the needs of children, and the empowerment of youth and women.

  • EAA is the umbrella organisation overseeing three core programmes: Educate a Child, Al Fakhoora and Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict (PEIC), as well as one special project, the Kakuma Project.

  • For more information, visit, follow us on twitter @EAA_Foundation, Facebook and Instagram @educationaboveall_eaa

Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict (PEIC)

  • PEIC was founded by Her Highness Sheikha Moza Bint Nasser in 2009 to promote and protect the right to education in areas affected by crisis, conflict and insecurity.

  • PEIC focuses on strengthening the international legal framework that protects education and schools from attack during conflict as well as promoting the values of the rule of law, including the right to education.

  • PEIC brings together practitioners and specialists in education, international law and child protection together to protect the right to education.

  • An estimated 36% of out-of-school children are living in conflict-affected areas.

  • 1 million young people are missing out on meaningful opportunities for learning and skills development in these contexts.

Safe Schools Declaration (SSD)

  • The Safe Schools Declaration (SSD) is an inter-governmental political commitment which provides states the opportunity to express broad political support for the protection and continuation of education in armed conflict.

  • By joining the declaration, states formally endorse the Guidelines for Protecting Schools and Universities from Military Use during Armed Conflict and commit to “bring them into domestic policy and operational frameworks as far as possible and appropriate.” • SSD was developed through state consultations led by Norway and Argentina and opened for endorsement on 28 May 2015.

  • The declaration was immediately endorsed by 37 countries around the world. This number has continued to grow over the last two years, highlighting the increasing global commitment to education.

  • For more information, visit or use the twitter hashtag #SafeSchoolsDeclaration