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Convergence Assembly on Education of the World Social Forum - Dakar 2011

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World Social Forum, published the 6 March 2011.

Convergence Assembly

Dakar, 10 February 2011.

The participants in the Education Assembly of the WSF, gathered at the Cheik Anta Diop University, in the City of Dakar, on February 10th 2011, representing a diversity of social movements, educational networks, teachers’ unions, popular organizations, students, organized engaged parents, from international, regional and national organizations, hereby endorse and support by consensus the following points of agreement, after a process of democratic deliberation and convergence inclusive of the agendas of our own organizations, vowing our engagement with the education of our peoples, in agreement with the Chart of Principles of the WSF.

Herewith, we assert and support the following points of agreement:

  • 1. The Right to Education as a Fundamental Human Right, intrinsically connected with all other economic, social, political, cultural and environmental human rights (from the perspective of transversal connectivity).
  • 2. Our acknowledgement and support of the ongoing struggles for citizen education, for democratization, the new challenges of labor (work), social justice, equality, in the framework of life-long learning.
  • 3. A public education under state (public) responsibility, secular and free of cost, all the way from infant to higher (university) education - throughout all the life span, which constitute the geist and aim of our struggle from various perspectives: trade unions, parents associations, students and, in general, from organized civil society demanding the public financing of education.
  • 4. Education should be inclusive of all the diversities: ethnic, gender and sexual orientation, generational, territorial, including rural education, discapacities (special education) and the like.
  • 5. Our reinvindication of the Pedagogy of Paulo Freire and other pedagogical theories based in local and indigenous knowledge, popular and citizen education and, last but not least, the recuperation of the historical memory of all the Peoples of the World.
  • 6. The development of strategies anchored and with implications for local, national governments and international organizations, against the privatization and mercantilization of education, from the perspective of education as a fundamental and inherent human right.
  • 7. Strengthening of the Social Movement struggling for Education as a Fundamental Human Right.
  • 8. Our rejection of impertinent colonialist education, in particular, in African countries, which ignores and neglects local knowledge, wisdom and histories.
  • 9. The production of significative and applicable (applied) knowledge, in response to local contexts and problematic situations, such as: migration, forced displacement, war, violence and all forms of discrimination, thereby asserting the right to education in the home language and culture.
  • 10. The explicit need to respond to the needs of teachers and students under conditions of war and violence, demanding the safeguard of their lives and human rights.
  • 11. To strengthen the struggle and warrant of better working conditions for teachers, in view of the ongoing and accelerated deterioration of working conditions of educational workers and the conditions of the teaching/learning process.
  • 12. To acknowledge and integrate the particular needs linked to educational pertinence and significance (own language and culture, curriculum, ect), proper access (adequate infrastructure and instalations), educational quality (education centered around the human potentials in harmony with nature and the environment).
  • 13. The need to frame the struggle for the right to education en the context of the ongoing crisis of the hegemonic civilizatory project, promoting active citizenship and the resistence against the hegemonic model currently imposed from international organisations. The democratization of knowledge constitutes a basic element in the overall and encompassing democratization od society in general.
  • 14. The urgency of significantly linking the contents of education to the quest for the quality of education, accesible and pertinent to All, without discrimination, with solidarity throughout all the life span (life-long learning).

Having in mind the suggestions and proposals at the Educational Assembly/WSF 2011, we herewith warmly invite and promote all implied social movements, organizations and engaged persons in the realm of education in the world at large:

  • 1. To struggle against the policies of international organizations which promote the privatization of education - and to search for resources and social movilization for Quality Education for All!
  • 2. To exchange and share the fruits of pedagogical research and fruitful educational and social movilization experiences struggling for the universal right of inclusive and quality education for all.
  • 3. To exchange the fruits of knowledge produced in a diversity of cultural sources and “ways of knowing”, in the field of education and at all levels and modalities of education.
  • 4. To support and strengthen the social leadership related to our educational/cultural quest and struggle to construct other possible worlds, thereby supportive of the WSFprocess.
  • 5. To invite world educational networks to share and provide access to the educational materials produced in their midst by their members.
  • 6. To work with a gender perspective towards the next International Conference on Education.
  • 7. To work taking into account and incorporating the gender (and sexual orientation) perspective, in our preparatory work leading to the next International Conference of Education.
  • 8. To integrate the rol of environmental education in organizational work in relation to the frame, aims and programmatic aspects of the next Conference Rio + 20.
  • 9. To participate in the next World Assembly of ICEA.
  • 10. To construct, develop and facilitate dialogue as our preferred option to build other possible world.
  • 11. To strengthen the alliances of the trade unions of educational worlers.
  • 12. To exert pressure on the governments of the world, for an education for social justica, for the adequate financing of free and quality public education for all.
  • 13. To articulate in the above context the ongoing efforts and struggles of engaged parents´organizations.
  • 14. To participate in the next Latinamerican Student Congress to take place in Uruguay, on the 45 years aniversary of OCLAE (Organización Caribeña y Latinoamericana de Estudiantes).
  • 15. To increase and link our respective struggles related to local and territorial issues, such as migration with the themes of the rights and access to quality public education for all.
  • 16. To use and expand the use of free software and to warrant the use and access to broad band as a fundamental human right of all peoples and persons of the world, same as full guaranteed free and equal access to all kinds and level of knowledge and information.
  • 17. To better articulate the Global Week of Action promoting the World Campaign of Education with related iniatives and struggles at the national and local levels for the Right to Education in each and all countries and corners of the world.
  • 18. To expand and strengthen the research and valuable experiences from higher education - vis a vis the Right to Education, geared towards the solution to all kinds of educational problems in the teaching/learing process.
  • 19. To privilege presencial education over log distance education, in the formation and teacher training in all levels and modalities of education.

Translated from the spanish preliminary version to English by Azril Bacal, Representative of the Paulo Freire Institute to the CI-WSF and CI-WEF 2011 in Dakar, Senegal.

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