Numerous conflicts across the globe have led to the suffering and displacement of millions of children and young people, often under horrific circumstances. The world’s poorest countries are most frequently those torn apart by internal conflict while other countries often suffer destabilizing effects of conflict in neighbouring states.
For children and youth who have lived through or are living in the midst of war and conflict, peace education is a chance to develop constructive skills for living that they have not seen modeled before. Peace education is a structured programme that can help youth develop the skills needed to avert involvement in conflict.
The term ‘peace building’ covers many areas including advocacy, law reform, basic education, and social justice. These programmes are generally designed to develop constructive skills, behaviours and associated values. Peace education can supplement regular schooling and can also complement ongoing peacebuilding processes.
Following the Machel Study on The Impact of Armed Conflict on Children (1996), UNHCR employed an independent consultant to develop a primary school programme. After extended action research in the refugee camps of Kakuma and Dadaab, a community-based programme for adults and youth that included a set of training materials for teachers and facilitators was developed. The life skills-based Peace Education Programme (PEP) was piloted in the camps and then implemented across a wide range of countries with national officers managing the programme and training peace education teachers.
In 2001, following an independent evaluation by Dr. Anna Obura (formerly of UNICEF) on the use of the PEP in the Kakuma and Dadaab refugee camps, UNHCR shared the PEP materials with INEE members. At a workshop hosted by UNESCO in March 2002, INEE members were invited to review ways of using the materials to meet the needs of a wide-range of emergency-affected populations, including those outside the refugee context. In 2003-2004, with funding from the Norwegian Government, UNESCO and UNHCR hired Pamela Baxter to update the PEP materials, and these were subsequently re-published in 2005 (see section below).
In recent years, the PEP materials have served as a model for the development of peace and citizenship education programmes in post-conflict countries. UNHCR, UNESCO, and others have used the PEP materials in programmes for curriculum development and teacher training.
The Peace Education Programme (PEP) that INEE members and partners produced and endorsed in 2005, is designed for learners in both formal and non-formal education, and can be used by ministries, aid agencies, and others. The PEP implementation structure is based on the experience acquired over the ten years the programme had been in use in refugee contexts. After external evaluation in 2005, INEE and partners revised the materials, incorporating suggestions and feedback from specialists who implemented it in the field.
The PEP teaches the skills and values associated with peaceful behaviours. The programme enables and encourages learners to think constructively about issues, both physical and social, and to develop constructive attitudes towards living together and solving problems that arise in their communities through peaceful means. The programme requires learners to practice these skills and to discover the benefits for themselves so that they psychologically ‘own’ the skills and behaviours.
To ensure that it is viable, it is essential that peace education is not a ‘one-off’ initiative but rather a well structured and sustained programme. As a result, the materials are appropriate for both primary and secondary school learners as well as adult learners.
Peace Education Programme (PEP) materials:
1. Overview of the Programme English, français, Arabic
2. Facilitators and Trainers Training Guide English, français, Arabic
3. Background Notes for Facilitators English, Arabic
4. Background Notes for Teachers English, Arabic
5. Manual for Training of Facilitators - 1 English, français, Arabic
6. Manual for Training of Facilitators - 2 English, Arabic
7. Manual for Training of Facilitators - 3 English, Arabic
8. Teacher Training Manual - 1 English, français, Arabic
9. Teacher Training Manual - 2 English, français, Arabic
10. Teacher Training Manual - 3 English, Arabic
11. Teacher Activity Book English, français, Arabic
12. Teacher Activity Book of Secondary Modules English, Arabic
13. Sara’s Choice - A Collection of Stories and Poetry English, Arabic
14. Facilitators’ Manual for Community Workshops English, Arabic
15. Community Course Booklet English, Arabic
16. Analytical Review of Selected Peace Education Materials English
Click to download a ZIP file of each language set of PEP materials:
This study, conducted in 2009 by a team of students at the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) at Columbia University, is an evaluation of Peace Education Programme (PEP) implementation in Kenya, Ghana, Timor-Leste, and Sudan. Through literature review and interviews with practitioners, the SIPA team developed recommendations for good practices and opportunities for future use. Authors include Lydia Allen, Chantal LaParl-Green, Mana Miyawaki, Nelson Monroe, Siri Siripanlch, and Brandon Thompson.
Click to download the evaluation.
This evaluation of the Peace Education Programme (PEP) managed by Jesuit Refugee Service in Uganda and South Sudan took place from 17-28 October 2005 in the field, with other interviews held before and after in Nairobi. The primary objectives of the evaluation was to assess the impact that the programme had in the communities and schools in northern Uganda (specifically in Adjumani, Moyo and Arua districts) and southern Sudan (Kajokeji and Nimule) since the program was initiated in late 1999, and to propose possible ways forward. Authors include Vick Ikobwa, Sr. Roxanne Schares, and Fr. Elias Omondi.
Click to download the evaluation.
In 2008, UNICEF, together with the Sierra Leone Ministry of Education and the national Teacher Training institutions, developed a behaviour change programme for teachers entitled “Emerging Issues.” The course covers a range of topics, including human rights, citizenship, peace, environment, reproductive health, drug abuse, gender equity, and disaster management. The course also includes methodology topics like education theory, classroom management, and teachers as agents of change. Users can adapt this course material to other settings, noting that the materials should be sequenced in a way that progressively builds understanding and skills.
Click to download a zip file of all of the course materials, or access individual files via the links below.
In 2007-2008, the Education Development Center (EDC) implemented an Interactive Radio Instruction (IRI) English language programme for literacy and numeracy in South Sudan. Margaret Sinclair was commissioned to develop the following materials for this programme.
Learning to Live Together: building skills, values and attitudes for the twenty-first century
By Margaret Sinclair with Pamela Baxter, 2004
This overview and set of case studies was written to place the INEE Peace Education Programme in a broader context and provide a theoretical basis, emphasizing the importance of a spiral or cyclic approach reinforcing and deepening learning of peace-related skills and concepts through all years of schooling. The UNESCO term ‘learning to live together’ covers peace education and other education approaches aimed at similar goals.
Learning to Live Together: design, monitoring and evaluation of education for life skills, citizenship, peace and human rights
By Margaret Sinclair, Lynne Davies, and Felisa Tibbitts, 2008
This practitioner-oriented guide presents some practical suggestions for evaluation, taking note of the tendency of interviewees to provide positive feedback which will please the interviewer. Suggestions for overcoming this include the use of focus groups, and of questions asking students to describe which parts of a programme were most impactful and why.
Learning to Live Together: education for conflict resolution, responsible citizenship, human rights and humanitarian norms
Edited by Margaret Sinclair, 2013
Contributions from 17 field practitioners summarise their field experience, from peace education initiatives to textbook reform in support of peace, human rights and civics.
Education for Safety, Resilience and Social Cohesion: a guide for curriculum planners
By IIEP-UNESCO, Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict (PEIC), and UNESCO’s International Bureau of Education (IBE), 2015
These guidelines, developed as part of a partnership between UNESCO and Education Above All’s Protect Education in Insecurity and Conflict programme, suggest ways of introducing peace and related skills and concepts into textbooks and supplementary education materials.
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