Position Title: Education Officer
Receiving Agency: UNHCR
P Level: P3
Location: Chisinau, Moldova
Duration: 5 months (until March 31st, 2023)
Language: English required. Russian, Ukrainian and/or Romanian is an asset.
The escalation of conflict in Ukraine, which started on 24 February 2020, has resulted in civilian casualties and the destruction of civilian infrastructure, forcing people to flee to surrounding countries such as Moldova seeking safety, protection, and assistance. As of 7 September 2022, over 600,000 refugees have crossed from Ukraine into Moldova, primarily women and children, with over 90,000 refugees currently present in the country. The Government of Moldova has the primary responsibility, including ensuring access to services and assistance and serves as the overall coordinator for the refugee response.
Currently, there are a number of challenges related to education of Ukrainian children. Ukrainian children who have not sought asylum (and instead have a provisional legal status under the Republic of Moldova’s Emergency Declaration) may enroll in school as “auditors” but may not be fully enrolled. Additional barriers to enrollment relate to vaccination records and school records from Ukraine.
Furthermore, many families prefer for their children to continue to follow the online Ukrainian school curriculum. However, some students lack the appropriate technology (laptops, wifi) to effectively engage in online education. Additionally, even though school is compulsory in Moldova up to age 16, there is currently not a systematic way to ensure that all children are attending school, as data is not available on the children who attend Ukrainian classes online.
Additional challenges exist for specific groups of children, such as children with disabilities and Roma children. Higher education, technical and vocational training, and information education, including Romanian language classes, are additional areas for work in the sector.
Against this backdrop, UNHCR is looking to engage more fully in the education sector and is looking for an Education Officer to support this work.
AIM OF THE MISSION
Working in close collaboration with all protection units, UNICEF, and relevant government counterparts, the Education Officer would work to advocate for full inclusion of refugee children in Moldovan schools, address barriers to enrollment, and work to support additional services needed for specific groups of students.
Under the supervision of the Senior Protection Officer, the incumbent will:
• Translate global education objectives and strategic directions into national guidance, strategies, and priorities, and ensure coherence with UNHCR's global education policy and the national education sector plan.
• Undertake direct dialogue at the national level on implementing education programs in line with UNHCR strategic directions, including with the Ministry of Education and Research, education partners, and coordination networks.
• Undertake field visits throughout the country to assess education needs, gaps, and challenges.
• Co-chair, together with UNICEF, the Interagency Education Working Group. Provide education inputs to all relevant Interagency activities.
• Identify and address barriers to enrolment of Ukrainian children in Moldovan schools, with particular attention to marginalized and at-risk groups.
• Engage, promote, and foster partnerships and collaboration with national education stakeholders and partners.
• Foster inter-sectoral linkages and coordination with child protection, GBV, gender, community-based protection, livelihoods/economic inclusion, and health, and provide specialist advice to integrate education-related concerns in the broader planning.
• Provide technical advice and support on all issues related to UNHCR education programs and strategic directions, in line with UNHCR education policy and regional priorities.
• Provide support to the Protection team, as needed.
6 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 5 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 4 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree.
• Fluent in English (Ukrainian, Russian, or Romanian is an asset), with strong drafting capacity;
• Experience in refugee education programs, including education in emergencies; demonstrated expertise in education programming, policy, community services, community development/organization, social work, counselling;
• Expertise in facilitating training and capacity, building including for PoC;
• Experience engaging and advocating at all levels of government
• Knowledge of refugee protection principles and framework; familiarity with INEE standards and guidance; very good knowledge of education systems, curricula, and sectoral plans
• Knowledge of the international legal framework governing refugees, asylum seekers and returnees;
• Awareness of gender issues and how to apply a rights and community‐based approach;
• Ability to conduct individual and group assessments and to identify protection risks, to liaise with partners and pro‐actively find solutions, including for marginalized groups;
• Knowledge of and/or preparedness to become familiar with and abide by UNHCR’s principles, code of conduct and humanitarian goals;
• Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively as a self‐starter, but also with a team;
• Ability to work in stressful situations, under pressure, and extended working days, when necessary
• Ability to work in a diverse, multicultural environment