INEE Guiding Principles

The following statements represent INEE's guiding principles. Along with the INEE statement on anti-racism, they frame INEE’s work and actions. The INEE principles are aligned with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Humanitarian Principles, Sustainable Development Goal 4, Core Commitments for Children in Humanitarian Action, and the Global Compact on Refugees.

Adhere to global commitments  

  • Education is a basic human right for all people, including those affected or displaced by crisis, conflict, instability, and disasters.
  • Education should promote understanding, tolerance, and friendship among all nations, racial, cultural or religious groups.
  • Education should promote diversity and recognize that differences are a valued asset. 
  • Education should be included in all humanitarian responses.

Focus on holistic lifelong learning, including livelihoods

  • Inclusive, equitable, quality education protects children and young people during crises and displacement and lays a sustainable foundation for recovery, peace, and development.
  • All education provision, including in the early stages of a humanitarian response, should adhere to national standards that focus on quality learning outcomes, and be accountable for results.
  • Certified formal and non-formal education pathways, including accelerated education, should be provided in all humanitarian responses and in protracted crises. These pathways should ensure an accredited curriculum from primary through secondary school that results in learners gaining recognized qualifications. 
  • Education for children and young people, including learners with disabilities, should provide them with the relevant skills, knowledge, and competencies that will enable them to enter the world of work and participate actively in their communities.

Support displaced populations

  • Refugee, asylum-seeking, stateless, and internally displaced children and young people should be systematically included in national schools and programs near where they settle, with investment in hosting community services to the benefit of all.

Promote preparedness, sustainability, coordination, and system strengthening

  • As part of preparedness planning and from the onset of an education in emergencies response, national education-sector actors, local communities, and civil society should: 
    • Support inclusive, equitable national education access for all individuals affected by crises;
    • Ensure humanitarian alignment with government planning and priorities, as well as harmonization between education in emergencies program content and standards;
    • Advocate for development partner uptake as education system strengthening requires support from both humanitarian and development actors for long term sustainability; and 
    • Empower and fund communities to support and engage in the education of their children and young people. 
  • Given the protracted nature of most displacement crises, coherence and alignment between humanitarian and development partners’ planned actions and results should be ensured. This will depend on collaborative action by a wide variety of stakeholders under the leadership of national governments. 
  • Crises that destabilize education should be approached not only as urgent situations of immediate need but also as opportunities to strengthen systems and create positive change. 
  • Education services should be actively sustained and coordinated. This requires multi-year investment and long-term structures to achieve learning outcomes for all children and youth. 
  • Joint assessments, data, and other information shared by national, humanitarian, and development actors should build on existing data and information, and should be part of national data-collection systems in order to facilitate planning, national capacity-sharing, and system strengthening, as well as risk-informed education planning and programming.

Support active community participation 

  • It is critical to enable vulnerable children and young people, as well as marginalized populations, to become active decision-makers, not just recipients of assistance. This will create opportunities for displaced and affected populations and their host communities to engage in meaningful dialogue and joint decision-making, which can foster their peaceful coexistence.