By William C. Smith, RTEI Senior Associate. This blog post originally appeared on the RESULTS U.S. website here. Sixty million children remain out of school, pregnant girls are being expelled, and the school fee abolition movement has stalled, pricing the poorest children out of education. Speak out against these tragedies by supporting and participating in the first global RTEI consultation. Join RESULTS Educational Fund during the formative stage as we develop the Right to Education Index (RTEI). In taking a first, necessary step in ensuring children enjoy the right to education, RTEI aims to fortify and unite North and South advocacy campaigns by providing clear leverage for civil society organizations to hold countries accountable for the conventions they have signed onto. With tool development and a five-country pilot to take place in 2015, RESULTS Educational Fund and its partners are currently conducting a public consultation on select RTEI tools until Friday, May 15th. The RTEI consultation provides an opportunity for the larger advocate and research community to provide direct feedback, particularly focused on the RTEI Questionnaire at this stage. To provide a breadth of understanding on the project and aid in the solicitation of specific, actionable feedback, working drafts of the following RTEI tools or respective frameworks are available on the Right to Education Index page:
- RTEI Background Paper: Provides a project overview, aims, and timeline.
- Background to Indicator Selection: This document outlines the process of identifying and selecting indicators for inclusion in the draft RTEI Questionnaire. It includes RTEI Inclusion Criterion and addresses general concerns with index specificity and data availability. As it provides examples of how RTEI Indicator Criterion was applied to already-reviewed indicators, it is central to this consultation.
- Draft RTEI Questionnaire: The Draft RTEI Questionnaire is the primary document for feedback at this time. Civil society partners will be supported to complete the questionnaire over a two-month period, collecting the information necessary to assess a country’s progress on various areas of the right to education. Information from the RTEI Questionnaire will be used to calculate overall RTEI results, providing country-specific results that act as indications as to how well a country respects, protects, and fulfills the right to education for its citizens. This draft in its current state represents an all-in-one document including the questionnaire, guide, and fillable forms. This draft also represents a comprehensive attempt to capture indicators/questions explicitly derived from the international right to education legal framework, anticipating that this consultation will serve to help further refinement.
- Draft Framework for RTEI Analytic Handbook: This draft outlines the framework of the RTEI Analytic Handbook which will provide users with the means for interpreting overall index results as well as how the index can be flexibly used to draw attention to different themes, such as private education, girls’ education, income inequality, regional disparities, teachers, etc. For each theme, the Analytic Handbook will provide possible interpretations of the responses and potential leverage points to address if results are low. Although not the focus of this consultation, feedback on the framework is welcome.
To provide feedback during this consultation please follow the five step process outlined on the RTEI homepage. Additional questions, comments and feedback may be addressed to William Smith at [email protected]. The consultation period ends Friday, May 15th.