Peaceful Schools International works with schools around the world to help them become more peaceful places. We do this by working directly with our member schools, and by organizing events and taking on international projects that promote peace education. We also provide a range of different services available to any school.
What is peace education?
PSI defines peace education simply as “learning to live well together”. We also use the definition of peace education from UNICEF:
“the process of promoting the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values needed to bring about the behavior changes that will enable children, youth and adults to prevent conflict and violence, both overt and structural; to resolve conflict peacefully; and to create conditions conducive to peace, whether at a personal, interpersonal, inter-group, national, or international level.”
Peace in Action
The responsibility for creating a global culture of peace is far too lofty a goal for educators alone. We can, however, strive to create and sustain a culture of peace within our schools. To do so, we must teach peace. It cannot be achieved by means of a simple recipe or by wishing for it anymore than we can achieve it by writing tough policies or merely mandating it.
There are basic principles inherent in the belief that it is necessary to equip children and youth with the attitudes, knowledge and skills essential to the prevention and resolution of conflict. Every student has the right to feel safe in school. The prevention of conflict and the peaceful resolution of conflict can be taught and should be taught.
There are currently many books and other resource materials available that contain innovative, practical lessons in cooperation, respecting differences, communicating effectively, expressing emotions in a positive manner and resolving conflict creatively and non-violently. No single book or program will meet everyone’s needs. When there is a variety of resources made available in the school, teachers will be free to use those that are relevant to the needs of their students, being aware that their needs will vary from year to year.
In some schools and school districts, peace education has been incorporated into curricular activities. Social studies, health and language arts are some of the subject areas that are conducive to such integration. In other schools and school districts, peace education activities are introduced in an extracurricular manner. For example, many schools host Peace Festivals, invite guest speakers and hold assemblies with a focus on peace. How peace education occurs is not as important as that it occurs.
Check out our current projects:
Support to Member Schools
Youth Consultancy Committee
Northern Ireland Program
Have an idea for a new project? Let us know!