Deadline Extended for 2018 Picture Human Rights Poster Contest!

The deadline for the “Picture Human Rights” Poster Contest” has been extended to November 11, 2018.  Join us in celebrating the upcoming 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) by submitting a poster today!

Artists from ages 5 to 21 are invited to participate by creating a poster based on the UDHR. We hope teachers and youth leaders can use the contest to:
picture human rights button

  • stimulate young people to learn about, reflect on, and express what human rights and the UDHR mean to them.
  • encourage young people to educate their communities about human rights.
  • heighten awareness about the UDHR during its 70th anniversary year

NEW ENTRY DEADLINE: November 11, 2018

First Place winners will receive a $300 cash prize. 

>> Learn more and enter!

Sponsored by:

Amensty Logo             HRE-USA-new-logo2         teaching tolerance 2

9th International Conference on Human Rights Education – early bird closes soon

The 9th International Conference on Human Rights Education ICHRE) will be held in Sydney, Australia, on November 26-29 2018. The conference leads an annual international dialogue on human rights education (HRE) as a means of promoting democracy, the rule of law, justice, and intercultural and social harmony.

Entitled Unleashing the Full Potential of Civil Society, the conference will coincide with the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 25th anniversary of the education-oriented Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action. It is Australia’s largest celebration of these two landmark declarations.

The draft conference program will be online in early October. It features an exciting range of papers and includes workshops focused on the practical learning of HRE. Some of our keynote speakers include:

  • the Hon. Michael Kirby AC CMG (former Judge of the High Court of Australia),
  • Mr Xanana Gusmao (former President of East Timor), and
  • Dr Mmantsetsa Marope (Director of UNESCO International Bureau of Education)

Early-bird registration deadline: Wednesday, 10 October

>> Register Now!

Happy World Teachers Day!

Today on World Teacher Day HRE USA wants to thank all teachers for being educators and for fighting to defend the rights of teachers and their students.

In honor of supporting teachers to continue to be agents of change, here is a short piece from Education International entitled: “Standing on the Frontlines for Democracy – 25 Lessons Learned on Education and Democracy.”

standing on the frontlines

  1. Educate for democracy
  2. Stimulate critical thinking
  3. Shape global citizens
  4. Do not be the obedient servant of the state
  5. Be aware of the thin lines between patriotism and nationalism
  6. Advocate gender equality, diversity, and inclusion
  7. Protect the right to learn in one’s native language
  8. Burst internet bubbles and value privacy
  9. Embrace new technologies with prudence
  10.  Question standardized testing
  11. Keep schools safe sanctuaries of learning
  12.  Refuse to bear arms or wear police badges
  13. Oppose segregation
  14.  Do not deny undocumented children access to schools
  15. Fight discrimination on grounds of gender, religion, ethnicity,
    disability, social background, and sexual orientation
  16. Build resilience when inequality muffles the voice
  17. Open the school to the community
  18. Protect education for the common good
  19. Keep the market at a safe distance
  20. Don’t let politicians interfere in the classroom
  21. Stand up for your rights
  22. Protect your democratic organizations and institutions
  23. Defend and extend your collective bargaining rights
  24. Insist on the application of international standards
  25. Be proud of your profession

>> Read full 2-page article
>> Learn more about World Teacher’s Day

FREE Webinar with André Keet on HRE

Sign up for this FREE webinar with André Keet, Chair in Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation at Nelson Mandela University, South Africa.

Date: Monday, October 8
Time: 1 -2 pm EST.
Where: Online Webinar
Cost: FREE

Presenter: André Keet

Title: Can Human Rights Education be Transformative, Critical and Emancipatory?

André Keet holds the Chair in Critical Studies in Higher Education Transformation at Nelson Mandela University, South Africa. He is a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Race, Education, and Decoloniality, Carnegie School of Education at Leeds Beckett University, UK. Prior to this, he served as the Director of the Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice at the University of the Free State, South Africa.

Webinar Description:

Keet will approach the question, can human rights education be transformative, critical and emancipatory? from two angles:

One, through a reflexive piece Keet wrote on Does Human Rights Education Exist? (2017). In this paper, he traced his own thoughts and praxes on human rights education (HRE) in conversation with others since 2007. An element of self-referentiality is tracking his arguments, for which he apologizes. Revisiting his research and engagement with HRE over the past decade, he tries to make sense of the shifts in his own praxes to disclose, to himself, radical‐alternative possibilities for thinking and doing HRE. In traveling with himself, and others, he began to wonder: Does Human Rights Education exist?

Two, via an edited compilation (2018) put together by Michalinos Zembylas and Keet, Critical Human Rights, Citizenship, and Democracy Education. This book presents new scholarly research that views human rights, democracy, and citizenship education as a critical project. Written by an international line-up of contributors including academics from Canada, Cyprus, Ireland, South Africa, Sweden, the UK, and the USA, this book provides a cross-section of theoretical work as well as case studies on the challenges and possibilities of bringing together notions of human rights, democracy, and citizenship in education.

Celebrate National Voter Registration Day #UseMyVoice #UseMyVote

Today is National Voter Registration Day! 

To help celebrate and encourage students and adults to register, Teaching Tolerance (TT) has put together some greater resources on their “Register Voters” page.

If you’re already supporting voter-registration efforts at your school, share it here and add your name to the Voting and Voices map.  Also be sure to spread the word on Twitter using #UseMyVoice and #UseMyVote.

Even students who are ineligible to vote can pledge to participate in the democratic process with these two pledges you can share with students—and their families—to empower them to use their voices or their votes in the 2018 midterm elections.

The health of our democracy depends on the next generations of voters and voting advocates. There is no better time to commit to helping students register to vote and identify as agents of civic change. For further resources,  see TT’s  Voting and Voices page to give your students the tools—and the support—to participate in the democratic process.

Abolish Columbus Day

Celebrating Columbus means celebrating colonialism, celebrating racism, celebrating genocide. It’s time that instead we paid tribute to the people who were here first, who are still here, and who are leading the struggle for a sustainable planet.

It is time to stop celebrating the crimes of Columbus and stand in solidarity with the Indigenous people who demand an end to Columbus Day. Instead of glorifying a person who enslaved and murdered people, destroyed cultures, and terrorized those who challenged his rule, we seek to honor these communities demanding sovereignty, recognition, and rights.

To encourage schools to petition their administration and for communities to introduce legislation to rename Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day, The Zinn Education Project has compiled a 14-page packet that contains articles, sample resolutions, a resource list, and a poster.

>> Learn more


Tips for Making Classrooms More Inclusive

By the Human Rights Campaign (HRC)

Back to School is a busy time for educators as they set up their students for success — laminating name tags, creating bulletin boards and writing lesson plans. They know that for many children, the first few days back to school can make or break their year. As educators sharpen their pencils, the HRC Foundation’s Welcoming Schools program is working to ensure that schools also take the time to make classrooms a welcoming place for all by cultivating an LGBTQ and gender-inclusive learning environment.


Don’t know where to start? HRC is here to help with these tips for developing LGBTQ and gender-inclusive classrooms and schools.


  1. Use inclusive language on all forms. Back to school means paperwork for families. Educators can make the process welcoming by ensuring all handbooks, forms and other communications are inclusive of all family structures and gender identities (e.g., using phrases such as “families and caring adults” in place of “moms and dads”).
  2. Stock your library shelves with diverse books. Make sure students have access to books that reflect not only their lives but also identities and perspectives outside their experiences. Challenge stereotypes by featuring a Welcoming Schools recommended book as a first-day read-aloud.
  3. Create a welcoming bulletin board. We know displays are important features in every classroom, so why not switch out the apples and school buses for a display that shows diverse family structures and people of different races, gender expressions, and abilities? Use slogans that encourage respect for all people. For an easy visual, print a Welcoming Schools safe school sign.
  4. Develop clear classroom and/or school agreements. Educators must ensure that bullying policies specifically name groups that are disproportionately bullied or harassed, and then make it clear to students that this means no put-downs about who someone is or who their family is. Preventing bias-based bullying starts on day one.
  5. Prepare for teachable moments. Educators can practice how to respond when they hear students say things like “That’s gay!” or “You act like a girl!” or “You’re not a real family because you don’t have a dad!” Be prepared to interrupt mean teasing about a child’s identity or their family.
  6. Model inclusive language. Instead of addressing classes as “boys and girls,” try using non-gendered words like “students,” “scholars,” or “friends” to be more inclusive of all identities.
  7. Group students according to something other than gender. There’s no need to have boys’ closets and girls’ cubbies. Divide children by number or line them up by birth month, the color of clothing or alphabetically by name.
  8. Try a new lesson plan. Educators can give one of the Welcoming Schools lessons a try and start the year by teaching students how to be allies and learning about what makes each child special.
  9. Plan a family night. Hold an evening event to celebrate all families. Provide information for families and caring adults to help them talk with their children about LGBTQ and gender topics.

>> Learn more about the Welcoming Schools Program