Monday, July 14, 2014

The Legal Right to Education: How Does the United States Stack Up Internationally?

An interesting new student note, taking an international comparitive law approach to the right to education, is now available on westlaw.  See Yanet Marisol Beniteza, The Right to Education: Comparing Educational Rights in Japan, El Salvador, and the United States, 36 Hous. J. Int'l L. 749 (2014).  The introduction states:

Education is fundamental in the developmental stages of children and is generally referred to as “the key which allows people to move up in the world, seek better jobs, and ultimately succeed in their lives.” The subject of education in the United States is one that is widely discussed, and calls for education reform have been made. Not only is this the case in the United States, but also in countries around the world. This is such a high-priority topic in the international community that several international instruments guarantee the right to basic education. The right to education was included in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention on the Rights of a Child, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. This Comment will analyze the right to education as found in these three international instruments; the interpretation of the right to education by signatories of these treaties; and the steps that nations have taken in order to ratify the treaties.

n addition to analyzing the right to education as found in international instruments, this Comment will also focus on how these rights have been interpreted. Although the right to education has been universally recognized, education systems vary by country. Several nations have ratified the right to basic education either through their constitutions, legislation, or ratification of the treaties, but each has interpreted the right to basic education differently. These different interpretations have led to different education laws, policies, and practices.

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