Eight resolutions were adopted and a new executive board for the region was elected at the EI Asia-Pacific Regional Conference, held from 19-21 September in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The 7th EI Asia-Pacific Conference, attended by 400 participants, adopted the following resolutions:
· On Cambodia, Fiji, and Kiribati
· Proposed by the Higher Education Caucus
· On the threat of the KTU being deemed illegal by the Park Geun-Hye administration in Korea
· On the polarisation of education based on socio-economic backgrounds in Korea
· “Quality public education: building Asia-Pacific’s social and economic future”, proposed by the EI Asia-Pacific Regional Conference
· “Achieving gender equality through ending discrimination (against women and girls) in education”, proposed by the Women’s Caucus.
Resolution on quality public education
The EI Asia-Pacific Regional Conference’s resolution, “Quality public education: building Asia-Pacific’s social and economic future”, among other things, calls on governments to:
- Prioritise and allocate sufficient resources for inclusive education
- Provide education for children to acquire the basic knowledge, skills and values necessary for their successful functioning as citizens in their society. The focus will be on children from economically and socially disadvantaged families reaching the same standards of achievement as others
- Allocate appropriate resources for continuous professional development programmes to prepare teachers to face and cope with an increasingly complex teaching and learning environment
The resolution also recognises that “women and girls in the region are often affected by multifarious problems and discrimination. The Conference calls upon all teachers to transmit and implant social values, such as democracy, equality, tolerance, cultural understanding and respect for each person’s fundamental freedoms.”
The Conference also called on all governments and education authorities to ensure safe school environments and the safety of all children and women teachers through appropriate resource provisions and appropriate penalties for those who violate their safety.
Gender equality resolution
The Women’s Caucus’ resolution also demands that governments ensure the right of every girl child to receive quality, free public education by designing public policies and programmes which are fully resourced.
It also demands the development and implementation of gender equity targets for women and girls beyond 2015.
This resolution encourages EI affiliates to:
- Lobby governments to ratify and fully implement UN conventions relevant to the achievement of quality public education for girls
- Challenge governments to target resources to support internally displaced persons and ensure equity of access to education. This includes the equitable distribution of resources that children can be educated in their local communities
- Develop strong consultation and collaboration processes with governments to ensure that the voice of education professionals is represented when policy which impacts on women and girls is developed
- Provide training for men and women so that they can detect the existence of problems in relation to the education of girls and engagement of women and then effectively support their rights
- Support leadership development for women in unions and in decision-making forums in communities
Delegates also elected a new regional committee for 2013-2017, composed of 20 members, to be chaired by Yasunago Okamoto, from JTU/Japan.