Education and Children’s Rights

The LRC believes that children are the foundation on which a new South Africa must build itself.

Following a number of important Constitutional Court case victories, children’s social and economic rights are improving. But numerous key challenges remain. The LRC is working to compel the government to honor its obligations to children. The LRC’s clients are children whose concerns are symptomatic of the plight of rural and impoverished communities throughout South Africa.

The LRC’s education and children’s rights work includes

  • Challenging barriers to education caused by lack of transportation or safe passage to schools, under-resourced schools and oversized classes, discrimination against children whose families cannot afford school, fees, uniforms, or books, illegal disciplinary measures, and discriminatory practices;
  • Providing for effective birth registration processes in South Africa to ensure that all children will have access to health and education services;
  • Supporting young children who have been affected by HIV/AIDS through the death of parents, providing them with better access to social welfare, improved foster care placement, and safety;
  • Helping refugee children who have been orphaned, abandoned, or left homeless to formalize their status so that they will have access to child support grants;
  • Helping children who have experienced violence and sexual abuse obtain the protection and support they need; and
  • Making certain that policies concerning children with disabilities are applied uniformly and in the best interests of the child.

Please watch the above video about the LRC case that resulted in legislation requiring all schools to have classrooms, electricity, water, sanitation, a library, science laboratories, sports facilities, and a perimeter security – leading to the replacement of mud schools throughout South Africa. 

Please click here to read Fighting to Learn: A Legal Resource for Realising the Right to Education