The role and purposes of public schools and religious fundamentalism: an international human rights law perspectiveForum on Public Policy (2012)
The question of what are today the legitimate and proper role and purposes of public schools can
only be answered by a close examination and analysis of the human right to education which has
been developed by such international organizations as the United Nations and the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and by such international treaties as the
Convention against Discrimination in Education 1960, the International Covenant on Economic,
Social and Cultural Rights 1966 and the Convention on the Rights of the Child 1989. This paper
will begin by considering the various types and definitions of education and tracing the historical
development of the right to education. It will then address the following questions: What are the
underlying philosophical rationales of the right to education and how is this right classified?
What is the minimum or core content of the right to education under both international
conventional and customary human rights law? What were the historical aims and objectives of
a primary public school education and what are today the contemporary aims of such an
education? To what extent do these aims embrace democratic and religious values and freedoms
and can they be extended to accommodate the emergence of religious fundamentalism?
Citation InformationHodgson, D. (2012). The role and purposes of public schools and religious fundamentalism: an international human rights law perspective. Forum on Public Policy, 2012(1), 1-37