The Right to Safe Schools

Schools should be as safe as hospitals bearing a red cross, or as buildings and vehicles that bear the United Nations’ blue symbol. One way to to give schools this status is to define attacks on children and teachers in classrooms as crimes against humanity.

LONDON – It is relentless. This week, there were two more attacks on schoolchildren both in Afghanistan, one at a girls’ school, where staff were bludgeoned and bombs set off, and the other at a neighboring boys’ school, where a classroom was sprayed with bullets.

The number of casualties in both assaults remains unknown. But the cause is all too well known: There is a war against education.

More than 28 million out-of-school children are growing up in conflict zones, including places like the Afghan-Pakistan border, the fringes of Myanmar, and South Sudan. All of them are vulnerable to extremist violence.

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