Global Campaign for Peace Education - monthly newsletter/digest
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Dear subscriber,

Welcome to the June 2016 monthly compendium of the Global Campaign for Peace Education!  In this issue we are excited to feature a review by Betty Reardon of Abigail Disney's newest film "The Armor of Light."  While the film is focused on American gun culture, the transformative pedagogical lessons Reardon illuminates are applicable to discussions on small arms disarmament in most any context.

And once again, our gentle monthly plea: please help us "spread peace ed" by using the hashtags #SpreadPeaceEd and #PeaceEd, following us on social media, and by sharing and reposting news on your timeline and in your communities.  The Global Campaign is very active on Facebook and Twitter.  

In peace & solidarity,

Tony Jenkins
Coordinator, Global Campaign for Peace Education

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Featured Article(s)

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“The Armor of Light”: a Catalyst for Peacelearning

“The Armor of Light”: a Catalyst for Peacelearning

A film review by Betty Reardon

So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.
  - Romans, 13:12

 Visit the official website of "The Armor of Light"

Abigail Disney’s brilliantly executed, ethically instructive and politically relevant documentary is an important contribution to the current societal conversation debating the American gun culture, its daily shootings, and the growing conflation of weapons with personal and family security that characterize it. The regularity of gun deaths that takes lives of all ages and races, but disproportionately of young black men makes the persistence of racism imbedded in our social order readily evident. Less noted, brought to public attention only in sensational cases or crimes that bring the active attention of feminists and women’s rights activists, are the multiple incidents of domestic violence escalating beyond physical abuse to murder, when the abuser is in possession of a firearm. Children bringing loaded guns to school or dying by accidental shootings, usually in their own homes is more frequently reported. Easy access to guns also increases the possibility that death or serious injury in the commission of crimes that might not otherwise have had lethal consequences. Clearly the prevalence of handguns and private possession of assault weapons poses a problem of such proportions as to be a subject of significant attention on the teaching agendas of all peace educators. Disney’s film is a powerful pedagogic tool for addressing this agenda item. It vividly illustrates the dire national need to confront the problem of weapons in American society and documents the struggle to fulfill that need by three individuals of diverse backgrounds who share strongly held beliefs in the value of human life.

Click here to view media. 

Values reflection, perspective change, and transformation, both personal and social, are touted as goals of peace education. Such purposes appear repeatedly in the literature, recognized as the conceptual fundaments of peace pedagogy intended to induce authentic peacelearning. Peacelearning is a term we use to refer to the reflective and affective experiences that lead us to a comprehension of the nature and consequences of any of the multiple forms of violence and knowledge of potential alternatives - the two part substantive core of peace education. It is learning that peace educators seek to deepen into committed action toward the realization of one or more of the alternatives. It can evolve in any setting in which learning takes place, within an individual or a group. The alternative embraced by Reverend Rob Schenck, Lucy MacBath and John Phillips, featured in “The Armor of Light” is the reduction and elimination of the widespread gun violence that brings daily tragedies into the lives of families and communities throughout the United States.

While peace educators have identified particular learning goals, i.e. develop a range of capacities to elicit and refine particular skills and abilities necessary to being effective agents for the achievement of the alternatives; and they have as well, designed specific pedagogies to achieve the goals, the actual experience of peacelearning tends to be hard to describe. However, as an oft quoted justice asserted, “I know it when I see it”, and I see it in Abby Disney’s documentary exploring the controversy over personal possession of guns, the confrontation between those holding up the inviolability of American citizens’ “right to bear arms” and those seeking to save the lives of the thousands regularly lost to gun violence. This film, in following the evolutions and actions of the three seeking to end the carnage, shows us persons who vividly manifest the responsible civic action that we hope to achieve through our varied practices of peace education and peace studies. As such it is an invaluable tool for the preparation of peace educators for classroom use at the secondary and tertiary levels. It is also invaluable as an instrument for public education for political action, particularly those actions directed toward changing gun laws - from those that still make it possible for virtually any and all to purchase and carry guns and to sell them with little regulation - to a set of reasonable regulations that would more effectively protect the public. “The Armor of Light” is an ideal vehicle to promote an informed and reasoned discussion of guns on university campuses and in community settings in which citizen’s groups seek to exercise civic responsibility to contribute to public security.

The major focus of the film is on the experience of Reverend Rob Schenck, an Evangelical Christian minister and activist for “the right to life,” chronicled through three of several stages of peacelearning that have long figured in my own teaching and writing about peace pedagogy: first, awakening of awareness of a particular aspect of the peace problematic, often as consequence of coming to know of a values and perspective challenging social reality; second, reflective analysis on that reality and one’s own relationship to it, risking the challenge and discomfort of a change on one’s perspective, even the ways in which we live out deeply held personal convictions and social values; and third, consideration of alternatives, resulting in commitment to action, to personally confront and act publicly to change what the learning has come to reveal as a remediable condition of violence and/or injustice.

Schenck’s learning process begins with the shocking and severe cognitive dissonance precipitated by the murder of Dr. Barnett Slepian, a physician associated with a woman’s health clinic providing abortions, by a Christian “right to life” activist. That event provokes him to confront apparent inconsistencies between faith and action. We see Rev. Schenck’s ruminations on the implications of acts of violence in the cause of preventing what he believes is a most egregious form of violence, taking the lives of the unborn. This rumination leads him to confront the instrument of this particular act of violence and the paradox of so many committed to defend the right to life of the unborn while owning handguns and being staunch proponents of “gun rights” that they argue to be guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the US Constitution.

His personal reflections, the painful search of his own conscience and acknowledgement that fellow Evangelicals are capable of such violence and stand ready to rationalize the need for individuals to be armed, challenges his long held value stances and indeed his identity as an Evangelical Christian activist. His searching uncovers links between various forms of violence and the racism evident in the disproportionate percentage of African American victims that leads Evangelicals of color to a different perspective from that of his fellow white ministers most of whom resist the reflection he calls them to. That resistance and his learning from Lucy McBath propel him to what appears to be an irrevocable commitment to continue to “evangelize” his fellow Evangelicals and campaign for changes in the gun laws. Here, indeed, is a powerful example of the kind of transformation peace education purports to pursue.

“The Armor of Light” provides an invaluable case study in peacelearning, and how a process of transformational learning unfolds in one person seeking ethical and theological integrity as he probes more deeply and courageously into the parameters of nonviolence that he came to embrace as a strategy to oppose abortion. In his own words, it may be a “third conversion;” the first being his conversion to the Christian faith as a teenager; and the second his conversion to the Republican Party in early adulthood, along with many other Evangelicals during the presidential campaign of Ronald Reagan. This shift results in what he has come to see as the “Faustian bargain” between Evangelical churches and the party. (A Catholic priest recently opined that he perceived a similar bargain between the party and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops.) Whether as peace educators we consider “the bargain” assertion to be valid, here is another issue the film raises, another point for reflection and discussion; on the possibility that contemporary politics around both abortion and gun issues, among others, constitute a serious compromise of the principle of the separation of church and state.

Schenck’s path of reflection toward transformative learning, this “third conversion” – unfolds as he becomes more acutely aware of the frequency and destruction of gun violence. He roams an NRA convention, taking in their mantra of “good guys with guns” protecting the innocent against “bad guys with guns.” He learns first hand about how to fire common side arms. Most significant to his learning are conversations with fellow right to life Evangelicals that are both humanly affecting and pedagogically effective segments of film that could well be selected for second viewing for reflection on and analysis of the common arguments on both sides of the issue. It is one a number of bits of teaching “pay dirt” that “The Armor of Light” offers to peace educators. Among them the pain of the bereaved mother as she questions the legitimacy of the “stand your ground laws” that have resulted in lives being taken with impunity.

It is not without trepidation that Rev. Schenck takes up this new evangelism against gun violence, grounded in his own interpretation of scripture. His campaigning among fellow evangelicals involves confronting them with his arguments about what he believes to be contradictions of faith, which he points out in attempts at what peace education advocates describe as civil discourses of difference. So heated is one conversation that while mutual respect may have been saved, civility is put in severe jeopardy. Rev. Schenck fully realized the risks and challenges of his mission to persuade the church to acknowledge its inconsistent stand in regard to abortion and “gun rights.” He urges them to support laws that would control the sale and use of hand guns and assault weapons now so easily acquired by any and all so inclined. We see him gather up the courage required of any who take risks in the pursuit of peace, facing heated and intransigent resistance among his fellow pro-life activists.

In spite of such fiery and thwarting discussions, he continues the practice of dialogue as a tool for exploring contending positions, conducting contentious discourse on deeply opposing views, while maintaining civility. We see his struggle to continue, facing the risks to his own position in the church, and most touchingly, reflecting the frustration and sadness of one seeking constructive change at the failure of members of his own community to venture to look at an issue from another perspective. With him we come to see that even when there is mutual respect and some shared social purposes, sometimes firmly closed minds cannot be opened to alternatives to their own unquestioned perspectives and positions.

But we also see that what might have been irresolvable differences can be set aside in the pursuit of a purpose that holds transcendent significance to even those with strongly opposed positions on serious issues such as the abortion controversy, that it may be essential to do so for a common cause. So, too, we see the importance of supportive others and individuals who hold some different values coalescing around goals common to all. The film depicts the initiation and development of the partnership between Rob Schenck and Lucy McBath, coming from different starting points they find themselves on a mutual journey. They give strength to each others’ resolve, offering each other support in times of waning energies in the partnership that develops between this African American mother and white male preacher. A flight attendant with a family history of activism for civil rights, Lucy MacBath lost her only son, 16 year-old Jordan Davis to an outrage shooting by Michael Dunn, a middle aged white man, over an altercation about the volume of music being played by four teenage boys in a car in a parking lot. Her relationship with Rob and their common learning grow from the tentative transcendence of stereotypes in their first somewhat restrained encounter, to a strong partnership forged in joint campaigning, strengthened by mutual respect and a common commitment to ending gun violence in American society. Their partnership is a model of the development of the capacity for such relationships that peace educators envision, why we advocate the value of diversity, encourage reflection and cultivate the ability to face challenges to our deeply held but frequently unexamined values and perspectives.

Lucy manifests the same courage that so many women have mustered to emerge from lives lived primarily in private (except for the employment they pursue to support families) into the public arena to reason with audiences sometimes hostile but sometimes waiting to be enlisted in their common campaign. Lucy is Women Strike for Peace, Greenham Common Women, the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo and those who recently walked with North and South Korea women across the DMZ. All risked much to achieve justice and security for the vulnerable, clearly demonstrating women’s bravery and the social creativity we know to be essential to the achievement of peace. She has institutionalized these capacities into an organization, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, to further extend and pursue this struggle for security and justice.

The third of the individuals in this team is John Phillips, a successful white personal injury lawyer who agued the case brought by Jordan Davis’ father, Ron Davis, (Ron, himself overcoming a reluctance to be a public person) and Lucy McBath against the man who shot their son to death. Michael Dunn, the middle aged white male shooter cites in his defense Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law on the pretext of feeling threatened by this group of unarmed, harmless teenagers, celebrating a graduation. Viewers will recall that the same law was invoked in the trial of George Zimmerman in the gratuitous shooting of Trayvon Martin. Phillips, a father of a toddler son and himself a gun owner, once aware of the extent and nature of the carnage and the denial of justice in these ever-increasing crimes becomes part of the campaign. His reflections kindle awareness that no one is safe in a gun culture. Because of his public association with the Davis case and the Schenck-McBain campaign, he has put his law practice at risk, suffering harassment as do most those who stand against unjust prevailing norms, experiences well known to those who worked in the Civil Rights Movement.

The film is contextualized within a particular, but highly significant, sector of United States society, Christian Evangelicals, strong supporters of gun rights, and conservative policies that include a strong and active stand against legal abortion. However, the problematic it addresses and the learning processes it documents are, in fact, to be found in relation to other interests groups, other issues of violence, and, indeed, other countries.

Learning programs on the gun issue could also lead to consideration of various related issues of weaponry and forms of socially tolerated violence resulting from private possession of guns. From widespread domestic and gender violence involving hand guns, to the dangers of post-conflict societies where arms remain in the possession of former combatants, to consideration of weapons in the formation of gender identity, to questions of the global small arms trade and other disarmament issues, “The Armor of Light” serves as an ideal starter to an essential peacelearning process and to the public conversation necessary to confront a too long tolerated source of lethal violence in the United States and the world.

Shown on its own this film will provide substance for many rich and productive learning sessions for which the producers have developed a study guide. Combined with some of the other recent films on the issue of gun ownership and the proliferation of shootings producing ever more victims, it could initiate incisive, informed and reasoned discussions conducive to significant learning about one of the major problems of violence that plagues our country today. All peace educators should seriously consider it for that purpose.

Notes:

Such domestic violence, for example, is the particular focus of “Gun Free Kitchen Tables,” a campaign organized by Israeli feminist peace activists. It is likely that other such initiatives are undertaken elsewhere in the world.

"The Armor of Light” from Fork Films is available from Amazon and iTunes and Google Play. For those seeking opportunities for action on the issue or further background please see the following Fork Films links and those of agencies striving to strengthen gun laws.

• The Armor of Light website

• Host a Screening

• Screening Kit & Discussion Guide

• Pastor Resources

• Videos & Interviews

 

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News & Views

(News, Opinion, Activity Reports)

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Working Toward Peace in Syria with Education

Working Toward Peace in Syria with Education

Education could be the most powerful change agent for a lasting peace in war-torn Syria. Of the 4.9 million Syrian refugees and 6.5 million internally displaced persons (IDPs), over half of them are children, and one of the most important things stripped from them in this conflict is their access to schooling. It is imperative to reverse this trend, as education is crucial not only for the wellbeing of individuals, but as a tool for peace as well. While the prospect of solving many aspects of the conflict in Syria may seem impossible in the near future, improving access to education is a tangible, positive change that is within grasp.

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Peace Education Training for Philippine Colleges of Education

Peace Education Training for Philippine Colleges of Education

The Center for Peace Education of Miriam College organized a training for faculty teams from Philippine Colleges of Education May 19-20, 2016. The workshop sought to introduce the participants to the knowledge base, attitudes and skills that comprise peace education as well as on the teaching approaches and strategies compatible with educating for peace. It also sought to encourage the participants to integrate peace education into the professional education courses beginning SY 2016-2017.

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Rwanda Peace Education Program Concludes, Measures Impact of USC Shoah Foundation in Rwanda

Rwanda Peace Education Program Concludes, Measures Impact of USC Shoah Foundation in Rwanda

The education, community and peace-building Rwanda Peace Education Program (RPEP) has concluded after three years, and its partners have begun to evaluate the impact of the USC Shoah Foundation - Institute for Visual History Education's role in the program, with positive results. The overall aim of RPEP is the promotion of social cohesion, positive values (such as pluralism and personal responsibility), empathy, critical thinking and action in order to build a more peaceful society in Rwanda.

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Ekundayo Igeleke: Activism through education

Ekundayo Igeleke: Activism through education

Ohio school policies for addressing “violent, disruptive or inappropriate behavior” do not sit well with a large segment of the community. Activists argue that under these “zero tolerance policies” children are actually being suspended and expelled for offenses that are nonviolent, often out of their control, and possible to resolve with extra care from school officials. They also attest that children of color are being affected at a greater rate than their counterparts.

Ekundayo Igeleke, the new executive director of the University Area Enrichment Association, oversees the Freedom School, a free K-12 summer program in Columbus, OH. “We focus on restorative justice,” said Igeleke, who will bring in intervention specialists this year. “We never kick a kid out of the program, no matter how bad they are.”

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WISE Organizes a Global Dialogue on Education, Peace and Development in Tunis

WISE Organizes a Global Dialogue on Education, Peace and Development in Tunis

On 26 May 2016, WISE brought together, for the first time, the current WISE Prize for Education Laureate, Dr. Sakena Yacoobi, and a representative of the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet, the 2015 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Ms Ouided Bouchamaoui. Dr. Yacoobi and Ms. Bouchamaoui shared their experiences and described diverse strategies they pursued in their countries, including best practices in education to promote peace and development.

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Training Report: "Education for Peace – Developing Competences for Peace Education in the Youth Field"

Training Report: "Education for Peace – Developing Competences for Peace Education in the Youth Field"

The European Intercultural Forum e. V. just finalised the narrative report of their 1st training course in the frame of the Training Programme “Education for Peace – Developing Competences for Peace Education in the Youth Field” (Misaktsieli, Georgia - April 10-18, 2016)

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Peace Education Curriculum for Afghan students

Peace Education Curriculum for Afghan students

Help the Afghan Children's Peace Education Curriculum is the first formal school-based model to specifically target vulnerable middle-school and high-school students, encouraging them to reject violence and all forms of aggressive behavior while embracing the principles of peaceful living, respect for diversity, and cooperation.

Originally introduced in 2003 to three schools, the model has spread to 62 schools in five provinces, impacting over 86,000 boys and girls. Results from these schools over the past three years have shown a dramatic reduction in fighting, consistent improvement in classroom and schoolyard behavior, and similar reductions in teachers’ use of corporal punishment. In 2012, recognizing its potential to impact millions of students, Afghanistan's Ministry of Education endorsed HTAC's initiative to expand into other regions of the country.

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Education Is the Key to Breaking the Cycle of Violence

Education Is the Key to Breaking the Cycle of Violence

In this opinion article published at TIMES Ideas, Forest Whitaker and Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO argue that education must rise on the agenda of peace building, and to unlock education’s potential to nurture peace, we must support inclusive education systems that reach out to all groups and that teach human rights and new forms of global citizenship. We need to get this right to allow societies to escape the nightmares of history, to give young people every chance.

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No more excuses. Provide education to all forcibly displaced people

No more excuses. Provide education to all forcibly displaced people

This paper, jointly released by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the Global Education Monitoring Report in advance of the World Humanitarian Summit, shows that the education rights of forcibly displaced populations are being neglected on a large scale. It calls for countries and their humanitarian and development partners to urgently ensure that internally displaced, asylum seeking and refugee children and youth are included in national education plans, and collect better data to monitor their situation.

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Teachers: Agents of Peace Building in the Conflict Zones

Teachers: Agents of Peace Building in the Conflict Zones

Dr. Swaleha Sindhi suggests that in conflict-affected situations education is about more than service delivery; it is a means of socialization and identity development through the transmission of knowledge, skills, values and attitudes across generations. Education may therefore be a way of contributing to conflict transformation and building peace.

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Restorative Justice takes hold in San Diego schools

Restorative Justice takes hold in San Diego schools

Restorative Practices is taking hold in a number of San Diego Unified schools and its aim is to change the culture on campus by giving students more of a voice in their day-to-day lives at school. Under the districts restorative approach, which was adopted in 2014, educators now have more discretion in whether to suspend or expel students for bad behavior. Depending on each individual case, learning can come from “talking it out” in carefully facilitated circle sessions run by highly trained mediators.

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A Silent National Crisis: Violence Against Teachers

A Silent National Crisis: Violence Against Teachers

We know a lot about the phenomenon of school violence and how to recognize, mitigate and prevent it. This slideshow, research and brochure developed by the American Psychological Association is based on the assumption that school violence may be related to teacher victimization. The knowledge is framed in the form of questions that reflect different levels of prevention and intervention.

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Teach equality in India's classrooms to end discrimination, says activist

Teach equality in India's classrooms to end discrimination, says activist

Efforts to combat discrimination against India's lower castes, religious minorities and women must begin in the classroom, with children holding the key to ending deep-rooted prejudices, a human rights campaigner said. According to the Amnesty International's annual report for 2015-16, gender and caste based discrimination and violence has "remained pervasive" in India, with increasing censorship and attacks on freedom of expression over the last year. "Equality has to be taught in classrooms. We have to invest in fostering values of human rights," lawyer and human rights activist Henri Tiphagne told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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Rethinking scholarships as a force for social justice

Rethinking scholarships as a force for social justice

The Ford Foundation is promoting fellowships designed to support access to higher education and to advance social justice. Unlike traditional scholarship programs based primarily on academic achievement, social justice fellowships use non-traditional ways to recruit talented individuals already working toward positive change in their communities. The premise is simple: that extending higher education opportunities to leaders from marginalized communities helps further social justice in some of the world’s poorest and most unequal countries.

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John Lewis’ Graphic Novel to Be Taught in NYC Public Schools

John Lewis’ Graphic Novel to Be Taught in NYC Public Schools

MARCH is a graphic novel trilogy that tells the first-hand account of Congressman John Lewis’ lifelong struggle for civil and human rights. As a part of the New York City Department of Education’s “Passport to Social Studies” curriculum, 8th-grade teachers will now be able to use MARCH as a tool to teach students about the Civil Rights Movement.

“I am deeply moved that New York City Public Schools are adding MARCH to the Social Studies curriculum. This is a major step to ensuring every young person receives the best possible education about Nonviolence and the Civil Rights Movement,” Lewis wrote on Facebook.

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Cours Sainte Marie in Dakar… a school promoting peace education

Cours Sainte Marie in Dakar… a school promoting peace education

The Cours Sainte Marie de Hann in Dakar is an academic institution of excellence promoting peace education. The institution, a member of the UNESCO Associated Schools Project Network, received the UNESCO Prize for Peace Education in 1991. This institution celebrates this year a quarter century of actions and programmes that integrate peace education, learning to living together, and international understanding into their curricula. This 25th anniversary of the UNESCO Prize for Peace will be celebrated as part of the Mariste Festival of Arts and Cultures that will take place from May 10 to June 10, 2016.

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Amnesty International: How personal stories can enhance the way we teach human rights

Amnesty International: How personal stories can enhance the way we teach human rights

(Amnesty International) How to present the challenges faced by refugees to a young audience so they can relate to someone else’s experience? If you’re a teacher and if you’ve ever considered starting a discussion on refugee rights with your class, you may have wondered this. Amnesty International found out how a Human Rights Friendly School in Portugal uses personal testimonies to draw a more complete image of what it’s like to be a refugee.

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“Civil Resistance: The Power of the People” radio documentary

“Civil Resistance: The Power of the People” radio documentary

Released in May 2016, Civil Resistance: The Power of the People is 51-minute radio documentary that is airing on the show America Abroad on National Public Radio stations around the United States. It includes interviews and on-site reporting with practitioners, scholars, and experts on civil resistance.

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Trans-Border Institute Concludes First-Ever Certificate Program in Applied Peace Education in Sinaloa

Trans-Border Institute Concludes First-Ever Certificate Program in Applied Peace Education in Sinaloa

On May 7, The Trans-Border Institute of the University of San Diego (TBI) concluded the first ever certificate program in Applied Peace Education at the Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa (UAS), in Culiacán, Sinaloa. The diplomado brought together a diverse range of local activists, professionals, scholars, and university students for 100 hours of intensive study, problem-solving, and collaborative research on the most pressing peace and justice issues facing Mexico and the United States. A total of 43 participants completed the program, ranging in age from 21 to 63 years old.

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Kigali Genocide Memorial hosts Peace & Values Education Workshop

Kigali Genocide Memorial hosts Peace & Values Education Workshop

A Peace and Values Education workshop was held at the Kigali Genocide Memorial on 27 April 2016. Following the accomplishments of the Rwanda Peace Education Programme (RPEP) around the Country, and the successful integration of the Peace Education component into Rwanda’s national curriculum earlier this year, the Rwanda Education Board (REB) is now working closely with the Aegis Trust to incorporate the Peace Education component into the existing Peace Values module found in the Rwanda Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) curriculum. The aim of the workshop was to present the mechanisms of the Peace Education component to attending participants, which included of the representatives from the University of Rwanda – College of Education (UR-CE) as well as Ms. Hanna Doller, Second Secretary and Programme Manager for Peace and Security from the Swedish Embassy.

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Rep. Barbara Lee Recognizes Vietnam Peace Movement and contributions of peace studies programs in House Resolution

Rep. Barbara Lee Recognizes Vietnam Peace Movement and contributions of peace studies programs in House Resolution

Rep. Barbara Lee has introduced a House Resolution (H.Res.695) recognizing the Vietnam anti-war movement as, “one of the largest and most prolonged efforts to achieve peace and justice in recent generations and was critical to bringing an end to the war.” The resolution "applauds the establishment of educational programs at colleges and universities across the United States that are focused on conflict transformation and peace building."

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Betsy Sawyer, 60; teacher helped create ‘Big Book’ of peace letters

Betsy Sawyer, 60; teacher helped create ‘Big Book’ of peace letters

A dozen years ago, Betsy Sawyer formed a creative writing club for fifth-graders she taught at the Groton-Dunstable Regional Middle School. Under her guidance, the fifth-graders who joined the Bookmakers and Dreamers club planned and created a gigantic volume of essays, poetry, and artwork called “The Big Book: Pages for Peace.” Among its 3,500 contributors are the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, and Oprah Winfrey. The 12-year project was unveiled at a fund-raiser at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston in 2014. In March, it began a worldwide tour, starting at the United Nations. Mrs. Sawyer and three of the club’s original members went to New York to speak at the opening ceremony. By then, Mrs. Sawyer was in late stages of leukemia and she entered a hospital with an infection and fever upon arriving in New York. Against the advice of doctors, she spoke at the UN ceremony. Mrs. Sawyer died two weeks later, on April 3, in her home in Shirley. She was 60.

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Bi-communal Education for a Culture of Peace event held in Cyprus

Bi-communal Education for a Culture of Peace event held in Cyprus

More than 200 children participated in a bi-communal ‘Education for a Culture of Peace’ event this past weekend. The event was the first ever large-scale, full-day peace education event and was open for youngsters aged between six and 18 from both communities. Peace education workshops as well as activities ranging from sports, music, theatre and music were held with topics on human rights, social inclusion, antiracism, intercultural dialogue and sustainable development.

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Level-playing field: Girls play sports for peace (Pakistan)

Over 200 girls from seminaries and government schools participated in a sports gala that was held in Peshawar. The event aimed to promote harmony and tolerance among students and to provide them a background to interact and learn from one another. The initiative was organised by the Peace Education and Development (PEAD) Foundation, along with UNICEF, under the Social Cohesion and Resilience programme.

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Teaching peace, building resilience: Assessing the impact of peace education for young Syrians

Teaching peace, building resilience: Assessing the impact of peace education for young Syrians

Peace education plays a significant role in building resilience in children and young adults against the effects of trauma and violence, and in developing their resilience and skills to resisting recruitment into armed groups and engaging in violence in general. In October 2015, International Alert launched a project aimed at building an evidence base to demonstrate the role that peace education can play in addressing young Syrians’ needs and increasing their resilience in the face of violence, displacement and war; in particular their resilience to recruitment by armed groups. Evidence gathered through Alert’s work with Syrian civil society organisations in Syria, Lebanon and Turkey shows that the provision of psychosocial support, safe spaces, supportive and positive adult role models, and value-based lessons in non-violence, human rights and self-care helps young people to navigate and cope with the impact of war.

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hre2020clogo_1

HRE 2020: Global Coalition for Human Rights Education March 2016 Newsletter

HRE 2020 is a civil society coalition to support and strengthen the implementation of international human rights education commitments. It seeks to ensure a systematic monitoring of governments implementation of human rights education provisions in international human rights instruments. The March 2016 newsletter of HRE 2020 documents efforts and upcoming events.

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Action Alerts

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Apply now for the Evens Prize for Peace Education 2017

Apply now for the Evens Prize for Peace Education 2017

Does your secondary school have a strategy for dealing with ‘hot topics’ in a constructive way? Does your organization support secondary schools to deal with ‘hot topics’, through applying concrete strategies and tools? If so, your school or organization might be in the running for the Evens Foundation Peace Education Prize 2017. The 2017 prize aims to identify inspiring initiatives successfully implemented in secondary schools, so as to answer the need for ‘hot topic’ education strategies and so that these strategies can be promoted and shared with other schools.

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Resources

(Curricula, Research, Policy)

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Declaration and Integrated Framework of Action on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Democracy

Declaration and Integrated Framework of Action on Education for Peace, Human Rights and Democracy

This document is Declaration of the 44th session of the International Conference on Education (Geneva, October 1994) endorsed by the General Conference Declaration of the 44th session of the International Conference on Education (Geneva, October 1994) endorsed by the General Conference of UNESCO at its twenty-eight session Paris, November 1995 of UNESCO at its twenty-eight session Paris, November 1995.

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Successes and Challenges in Development Education and Youth Work in Egypt. Cumulative Impact and Needs Assessment Report

Successes and Challenges in Development Education and Youth Work in Egypt. Cumulative Impact and Needs Assessment Report

PATRIR and its 4E team has just released the cumulative impact and needs assessment (CINA) report entitled “Successes and Challenges in Development Education and Youth Work in Egypt”. The report is the output of a 5-months long assessment process implemented in the frame of the project “Technical Assistance for Development and Civic Education in Egypt” (4E), which was implemented by the Peace Action, Training and Research Institute of Romania (PATRIR) between October 2015 – February 2016.

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Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping Database

Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping Database

The Mir Centre for Peace at Selkirk College has created a global data base to collect and describe all Unarmed Civilian Peacekeeping (UCP) operations since 1990. This data base represents a starting point to try to capture a comprehensive picture into UCP activity.

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Human Rights Education Indicator Framework now available in English, French and Spanish

Human Rights Education Indicator Framework now available in English, French and Spanish

"The Human Rights Education Indicator Framework: Key indicators to monitor and assess the implementation of human rights education and training" developed by HRE 2020 is now available in French and Spanish, in addition to the English version that appeared in 2015.

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CND Peace Education: Active Learning for & about Peace

CND Peace Education: Active Learning for & about Peace

CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) campaigns non-violently to achieve British nuclear disarmament and to secure an international Nuclear Weapons Convention. CND Peace Education empowers young people with knowledge on peace and nuclear issues and offers a range of free teaching resources with full curriculum links and lesson plans. They also provide free teacher training and continuing professional development workshops. Here is an overview of some of the resources they provide.

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Call for proposals: Doctoral and Junior Faculty Research Fellowship on Civil Resistance

Call for proposals: Doctoral and Junior Faculty Research Fellowship on Civil Resistance

The International Center on Nonviolent Conflict’s (ICNC) Doctoral and Junior Faculty Research Fellowship enables eligible applicants to carry out research on civil resistance and/or conduct a study that can benefit from a civil resistance perspective, as part of their dissertation or for an upcoming book, journal article or book chapter. For 2016, $20,000 in total has been allotted for this program. Each Fellowship award ranges between $2,000 and $10,000. The deadline to apply is May 30, 2016.

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Films & documentaries on human rights, social justice, civil rights, non-violent resistance, war and peace

Films & documentaries on human rights, social justice, civil rights, non-violent resistance, war and peace

Principle Pictures founder and GroundTruth Films Director Beth Murphy has aggregated a list of films (narratives and documentaries) focused on human rights, social justice, civil rights, non-violent resistance, war and peace. These films can be sorted by subject/theme, country/event. Also included are links to watch/purchase the films and to educational materials to facilitate classroom and community discussion.

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Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact

Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact

Trying to figure out ways to measure the impact of your peace education projects? Here's a collection of tools and resources for assessing social impact, provided by the Foundation Center. Browse over 150 tools, methods, and best practices in the TRASI (Tools and Resources for Assessing Social Impact) database.

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Learn & Do

(Events & Conferences, Academic Courses, Programs of Study,
Trainings & Workshops, Campaigns, Youth Focused Events)

For a full list of events visit the Global Peace Education Calendar!

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3rd Compass Forum on Human Rights Education

3rd Compass Forum on Human Rights Education

For more information and to apply: Download the call for participants (pdf)Application Deadline: June 8, 2016Context and purpose The role of youth organisations and youth work in promoting human rights education (HRE) received an important push in the Council of Europe with the introduction in the year 2000 of the Human Rights Education Youth Programme which had the aim to mainstream …

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Diversity in Higher Education Research Colloquium: ‘Decolonizing’ Higher Education Transformation

Diversity in Higher Education Research Colloquium: ‘Decolonizing’ Higher Education Transformation 2-3 February 2017Bloemfontein (University of the Free State), South AfricaCALL FOR PAPERS download call for papersConveners: Nokuthula Sithole (University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa); Dionne van Reenen (University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa); Abel Valenzuela (University of California, Los Angeles, United States); Maurice Crul (Vrije University, Amsterdam, Netherlands); …

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The Future of Peace Summit

The Future of Peace Summit

Celebrating 10 Years of the Global Peace Index (GPI)Join Diplomatic Courier and the Institute for Economics and Peace to mark the 10th edition of the Global Peace Index, the world’s leading measure of country peacefulness, and discuss the major challenges and opportunities for peace in the decade ahead.The Global Peace Index, which ranks 162 countries on their peacefulness using 23 …

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Education 2.0: Teaching in a Fast Changing World

Education 2.0: Teaching in a Fast Changing World

Education 2.0: Teaching in a Fast Changing WorldUPEACE Center for Executive Education Do you sense that the world is changing at an increasingly quickening pace? Are you noticing that the way you communicate, find information, read, learn, and work have changed in the last few years?  And have you had time to think rethink your practices as an educator in response …

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International Conscientious Objector Day

International Conscientious Objector Day

Conscientious Objectors are those who, for moral or religious reasons, refuse to participate in armed conflict or join the armed forces. International Conscientious Objector Day is marked around the world each year on 15 May. You can find further details on the Peace Pledge Union website. Also, take a look at CO Project, an online archive and educational resource about …

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19th World Congress of the International Association of Educators for World Peace

19th World Congress of the International Association of Educators for World Peace

Peace Education for Mitigating Violence, Terrorism and Insurgency for Sustainable PeaceOn the Auspicious Occasion of the 71st Foundation Day of United NationsOrganized by INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF EDUCATORS FOR WORLD PEACE, NGO of the UN (ECOSOC)In collaboration with GOKHALE EDUCATIONAL SOCIETY’S, H.P.T. ARTS AND R.Y.K. SCIENCE COLLEGE & S.M.R.K.-B.K.-A.K. MAHILA MAHAVIDYALAYA, NASHIK, MAHARASHTRA, INDIADear Academicians/Educational Administrators/Researchers/Executives and OfficialsGreetings from IAEWPWe are …

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Intersectionality in Education - Webinar

Intersectionality in Education - Webinar

Intersectionality has become a buzzword in education, but what does it mean and why is it important in schools? Our students have multiple identities; for many, the converging identities make them more vulnerable to discrimination and oppression. Understanding how identities like race, gender, class, sexual orientation and ability intersect can help educators better educate and support all students.This webinar, offered …

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Third Annual International Conference on Ethnic and Religious Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding

Third Annual International Conference on Ethnic and Religious Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding

One God in Three Faiths: Exploring the Shared Values in the Abrahamic Religious Traditions-Judaism, Christianity and IslamThe International Center for Ethno-Religious Mediation (ICERM) invites you to the Third Annual International Conference on Ethnic and Religious Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding. The World finds itself in serious times where nations are fighting within and without in ethnic and religious conflict.  But these times also …

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Knowledge

(Publications & Book Reviews)

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New Book: Educating for Peace

New Book: Educating for Peace

"Educating for Peace," edited by Lokanath Mishra, lays a foundation for students, teachers and peace educators to explore the elements necessary to create a peaceful society. Written mainly for researchers, peace educators and students, this book is an attempt to identify and deliberate on topics that should be addressed if we are to fully establish peace education.

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Taylor & Francis Publishers: free articles related to sustainable development goal #4 - quality education

Taylor & Francis Publishers: free articles related to sustainable development goal #4 - quality education

The United Nation's Sustainable Development Goal 4 aims to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education, and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all by 2030. Taylor & Francis has selected an array of articles focusing on inequality and sustainable development in education. These articles will be free to access via this page until the end of 2016.

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Educating for peace through (nonviolent) action: "122 easy [and difficult] actions for peace"

Educating for peace through (nonviolent) action: "122 easy [and difficult] actions for peace"

The book “122 easy (and difficult) actions for peace” is a useful tool for peace educators that aim for social change. Author Cécile Barbeito Thonon notes that Peace Education should not be an aim in itself but a mean to get more peaceful societies, it should change minds, attitudes and behaviors. More than that, these new attitudes and behaviors should be meaningful and strategic enough to transform the local or global context.

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promo-global-peace

New publication: Promoting Global Peace and Civic Engagement through Education

"Promoting Global Peace and Civic Engagement through Education," edited by Kshama Pandey and Pratibha Upadhyay, outlines the pedagogical practices necessary to inspire the next generation of peace-bringers by addressing strategies to include topics from human rights and environmental sustainability, to social justice and disarmament in a comprehensive method. Providing perspectives on how to live in a multi-cultural, multi-racial, and multi-religious society, this book is a critical reference source for educators, students of education, government officials, and administration who hope to make a positive change.

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Jobs & Funding

(Job Postings & Funding Opportunities)

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Humanitarian Learning Manager: Save the Children UK

Humanitarian Learning Manager: Save the Children UK

Save the Children UK is seeking an experienced Humanitarian Learning Manager to join them and lead the mapping of existing humanitarian learning activities and the design of innovative humanitarian learning initiatives in partnership with the Academy Centres and the wider humanitarian sector.

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Instructor of Peace Studies, Non-Tenure Track: Chapman University (CA, USA)

Instructor of Peace Studies, Non-Tenure Track: Chapman University (CA, USA)

Chapman University’s Peace Studies Department seeks applications for a non-tenure track, Instructor of Peace Studies within Wilkinson College of Art, Humanities and Social Sciences, beginning August 2016.

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The United National Alliance of Civilizations Fellowship Programme: Call for Applications

The United National Alliance of Civilizations Fellowship Programme: Call for Applications

The main objective of the UNAOC Fellowship Program is to challenge cultural stereotypes and develop cross-cultural partnerships between peoples from different faiths and cultures. During two weeks, the Europe & North-America (EUNA) cohort and the Middle East & North-Africa (MENA) cohort will visit each other’s region and interact with a wide range of local actors and partners. In 2016, the Fellowship Program will also focus on Education as a tool to prevent of radicalization and xenophobia. 2016 applications due June 26.

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8 Travel Grants and Fellowships for Educators

8 Travel Grants and Fellowships for Educators

Summer is the perfect time to research and apply for a teacher travel grant. The key is to look in the right places and write a compelling application. To help you get started, here are some tips compiled by Matt Davis of Edutopia for writing winning proposals, a few inspiring articles, and a list of interesting travel grants that you might want to research or apply to this summer.

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Education Program Specialist, Access in Crisis and Conflict Team: Dexis Consulting Group, DC

Education Program Specialist, Access in Crisis and Conflict Team: Dexis Consulting Group, DC

The Program Specialist is a member of the Access in Crisis and Conflict team within USAID/E3/ED and will report to the Access in Conflict and Crisis Team Leader. The Access in Crisis and Conflict Team aims to advance the strategic area of increasing equitable access to education in crisis and conflict environments. This position is responsible for monitoring, evaluation and research.

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Research Fellow in Conflict and Violence - Institute of Development Studies

Research Fellow in Conflict and Violence - Institute of Development Studies

The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is a leading global institution for development research, teaching and learning, and impact and communications, based at the University of Sussex. The Conflict and Violence Cluster has a well-established international reputation in shaping research agendas on the micro-level analysis of violent conflict. The Cluster is seeking to recruit up to two Research Fellows to extend the current research team.

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Endowed Professor of Human Rights Education. Utrecht University, the Netherlands

Endowed Professor of Human Rights Education. Utrecht University, the Netherlands

As Endowed Professor of Human Rights Education you will study how human rights, in particular women's rights, can best be given a place in education. In this respect, the leading question will be: Where and how can human and women's rights best be addressed in academic and professional education? On the one hand, this means defining the relevant themes for a specific target group within the wider subject of human and women's rights. On the other hand, it will also involve pedagogical and teaching questions: how can knowledge about human and women's rights best be transferred in a way that takes root and has impact?

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