While every child has the right to a quality and safe education, many children are unable to realize this right due to the impact of disasters. Studies of disaster trends and the consequences of climate change suggest that each year 175 million children are likely to be affected by natural hazard related disasters alone.
In this context, UNESCO is encouraging the integration of disaster risk education in school curricula in countries vulnerable to natural hazards and promotes the safe construction and retrofitting of school facilities to withstand hazards.
In the last decades, school safety has become a priority for many governments. Officially recognized within United Nations conventions, and the international agenda, school safety has quickly gained recognition in several frameworks and regulations approaching the matter from different points of view (i.e. United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Paris agreement, New Urban Agenda, Agenda for Humanity).
The Natural Sciences, Education and Communication/Information Sectors collaborate on the issue of school safety as articulated in the Comprehensive Safe School Framework and the Worldwide Initiative on Safe Schools.
The mission of GADRRRES is to ensure that all schools are safe from disaster risks and all learners live in a culture of safety.
This safety assessment methodology facilitates the decision-making process in the definition of rational and effective safety-upgrading strategies, and allows decision makers to take science based decisions on where and how they may invest their available resources for strengthening the safety of schools, their students and teaching staff in an efficient and economical manner.
UNESCO helps strengthen education systems in times of crisis to ensure life-saving messages reach children and their families; protects children and youth from attack, abuse, and exploitation; supports peace-building; and provides physical and psychological safety to children. Investing in education in times of crisis builds resilience and social cohesion across communities, and is fundamental to sustained recovery.