North Caucasus

A project to study the effectiveness of peace and conflict prevention education programs being implemented in five subregions of the [url=]North Caucasus[/url] was realizing from December 2007 till January 2008 as part of the international initiative to study the situation with the said programs world-wide.

The Project was aimed at examining the current situation with peace education in five subregions of the North Caucasus and developing recommendations regarding its further development.

The current situation in the following subregions was studied:

1. Republic of Dagestan (Patimat Omarova, Coordinator, Stop Alcohol And Drug Abuse, Makhachkala);
2. Republic of North Ossetia-Alania (Natalia Chuprunova, Coordinator, Farn NGO, Vladikavkaz);
3. Stavropol Krai (Viktoria Galyapina, Coordinator, Stavropol State University, Stavropol);
4. Chechen Republic (Vasiliy K. Yarkiev, Coordinator, Stimul NGO, Grozny).

The findings of this Project can be summarized as follows:

In the most public educational institutions of the said subregions, peace education activities are rather sporadic (peace classes or extra-curricular activities). Long-term targeted efforts in the field depend mainly on the personal initiatives of school principals and teachers or they have been introduced in public schools and other educational institutions which are engaged in related programs run by UN agencies, international and Russian NGOs working in the North Caucasus. However, a significant experience that has been accumulated by these institutions can become a basis for specialized programs to introduce basic components of peace education in the public educational institutions of the North Caucasus.

The following conclusions were made and recommendations suggested:

1. Synergies between government stakeholders from education and related sectors and civil society and community are absent.
2. The introduction of long-term peace education programs is urgently required.
3. Participatory projects and programs targeted at young people need to be supported.
4. Peace education programs are being introduced mainly as CSO initiatives.
5. The existing peace education efforts that have been initiated in some educational institutions are realized as pilot projects mainly.
6. Systematic retraining and professional development programs as regards peace education for educationalists at the national and municipal level are practically unavailable (except for the Pyatigorsk branch of the North Caucasus Academy of State Service in Stavropol Krai)
7. The only leading peace education program in the North Caucasus is the UNESCO sponsored program.
8. The establishment of a single coordination unit to develop integrated and comprehensive long-term peace education programs is urgently required.
9. Peace education initiatives are delivered mainly in the following forms: topical seminars, lectures, discussions, class debates, workshops, entertainment activities and celebrations, concerts and performances, excursions, picture competitions and exhibitions of posters, contests of young experts in other cultures, meetings with members of NGOs/CSOs, training activities, parents- and teachers- meetings, conferences, and optional classes.