Also present on this occasion were His Excellency Mr Philippe Kridelka, Ambassador of Belgium to UNESCO, and Mr Jozef Aelvoet, Delegate of the Flemish Government to France.
Mr de Groof congratulated the Director-General on his leadership and commitment on the fulfilment of the right to education. Outlining his vision for the role of chargé de mission, Mr de Groof said he hoped to raise the visibility of UNESCO’s work in this area, and also to help develop benchmarks and indicators to help monitor how governments were implementing the right to education. He also highlighted the importance of building partnerships with civil society, the private sector and the academic community.
The Director-General expressed his great pleasure at the prospect of collaborating with Mr de Groof in this field. He explained that he saw UNESCO’s role as essentially two-fold: to promote the right to education globally; and to provide practical support to countries, especially developing countries, in their efforts to implement the right to education. Mr Matsuura referred in this latter regard to successful projects that UNESCO has led in Kenya, Indonesia and other countries.
Following his meeting with the Director-General, Mr de Groof met with senior education staff to discuss the precise terms of his mandate, and how he could best help promote UNESCO’s work on the right to education.
Founder-President of the European Association for Education Law and Policy (ELA) and of the Interuniversity Centre for Education Law, Mr Jan de Groof is currently professor at the College of Europe (Bruges, Belgium) and the University of Tilburg (the Netherlands).