PUPILS and teachers in Londonderry’s Belmont House School have successfully completed a United Nations course empowering them to become active citizens and learners within their school and local community.
The school now has a UNICEF’s ‘Rights Respecting School Award (RRSA)’ Level 1 which promotes a rights respecting ethos in schools where the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) becomes fully embedded in the school’s values.
Principal of Belmont House, Nuala Begley said: “We are delighted to receive the level 1 Award certificate and hope to complete Level 2 in the very near future. Our school ethos fully supports the principles of the convention.” To attain the award the school was required to achieve the four key standards set by UNICEF.
A rights-respecting school not only teaches about children’s rights but also models rights and respect in all its relationships: between teachers adults and pupils, between adults and between pupils.
David McGimpsey, NI Professional Advisor for UNICEF presented the school with their Level 1 Award Certificate.
He said: “When the principles and values of the Convention are introduced at an early age and reinforced throughout school life, children and the wider community benefit.
“Educating children about their rights helps to make them feel included, improves their self-esteem, and helps them to understand the responsibilities they have towards others.”