Learning for lasting peace! 

January 24, 2024 8:57 am


Education is a human right, and it plays a key role in shaping communities!  

Today, Girls’ Education South Sudan joins the rest of the world to celebrate International Day of Education, a day to celebrate the role of education in supporting peace and development.  

The theme for this year’s celebration is, learning for lasting peace.. 

South Sudan has been affected by protracted crisis. Additionally, South Sudan has received an influx of refugees and returnees from neighbouring Sudan in the past year, with the highest number of refugees being school-age children https://bit.ly/SouthSudanBorderMonitoringDashboard . As we celebrate this day, we are calling for all children in and out of conflict to have access to quality education! 

Schools have been closed in South Sudan for over a month for the Christmas break and are due to reopen in February for the new Academic Year 2024! As we celebrate this day, we caught up with some learners and school administrators to share what they are looking forward to as schools re-open. 

“When schools close, I usually have mixed feelings. I have been a teacher for over 25 years, and I spend most of my time at the school. When schools close and learners go home, I feel like some of my own children have gone away from me,” Wani, Head Teacher at Atlabara East Primary School. 

Mr Wani explained why he is excited about schools re-opening on 5th February: “I have been a Head Teacher for a long time, and I can confirm to you that schools are some of the safest places for children. So, as schools re-open, I am excited because each academic year brings a child closer to his/her dreams. I look forward to the children being back at school and learning. I know it will be challenging due to the financial challenges, but I am sure learners will return to school.” Wani added. 

For her part, Dalia, a learner at Juba Day Secondary School shares her aspirations: “School is where most of my friends are, and I look forward to seeing them, but what is exciting for me for 2024 is that it will be my final year in secondary school. I am therefore excited. I will work hard to cross to the next level. I want to go to the university.” 

In South Sudan like many parts of the world, there are still biases that exist in schools and families against children with disabilities. On this International Day of Education, our Disability Inclusion Specialist, Lily, had this to say, “As schools re-open on February 5th, my hope is that all parents and guardians with children with disabilities send them to school. I also appeal to all schools to be welcoming to children with disabilities so that they don’t feel any different.” Lily added, “As a programme (GESS), we are committed to ensuring all children with disabilities are enrolled and their disabilities recorded clearly so that we can work to support them better. We will continue working to ensure that there is up to date data on learners with disabilities”. 

Today, we call upon all stakeholders to ensure that education is kept on the agenda so that learning can contribute towards lasting peace.  

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