Turkmenistan has made another step in reforming the education system by developing a Child-Friendly Schools (CFS) certification package presented today for validation at the roundtable organized jointly by the Ministry of Education and UNICEF. The certification package aimed at improving the quality of education and creating an enabling child-friendly school environment, is another important step towards alignment of the education system of Turkmenistan with international CFS standards.
A group of national education experts under the aegis of the Ministry of Education and with UNICEF’s technical assistance worked two years to have this normative framework developed. Prioritising the right of every child to quality education the CFS certification package will help accelerate the advancement of the education system of Turkmenistan towards internationally accepted quality standards in education. The package includes national standards and indicators, guidelines and procedures for certification of schools of Turkmenistan for conformance with CFS standards, which are also coherent with the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
Schools certified as child friendly will be proactively inclusive and child-seeking; academically effective for every child; gender-sensitive; healthy, safe, and protective; working in close partnership with parents and communities; and supported by strong leadership and management practices.
Representatives from various ministries, state agencies, public organizations and international development agencies who participated at the roundtable also witnessed certification of additional seven schools as child friendly that joined other 26 model schools already certified as child friendly a few years ago.
“A school is a significant personal and social environment in the lives of its students. A child-friendly school ensures every child an environment that is physically safe, emotionally secure and psychologically enabling and promotes quality education. The achievement of our joint goals rely very much on the effectiveness of our cooperation in promoting the CFS concept in Turkmenistan and I hope that our efforts will continue and intensify to achieve better quality of education compliant with internationally accepted standards for the benefit of all children of Turkmenistan,” said UNICEF Representative Oyunsaikhan Dendevnorov, who opened the event jointly with Turkmenistan’s Deputy Minister of Education.
The next steps will include further validation and endorsement of the CFS package by the Government of Turkmenistan, certification of schools and assessment of certified schools every five years. The CFS certification package will be presented at an international conference on inclusive education to be held this year in Turkmenistan.