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Model Policy for Inclusive ICTs in Education for Persons with Disabilities

This model policy is part of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies (G3ict) joint efforts to facilitate the implementation of the UNCRPD.

The main objective of the joint initiative was to develop a model policy document to be used as a template to assist UNESCO Member States in promoting the effective use of inclusive ICTs in education for learners with disabilities, although it must be emphasised that the policy objectives and actions outlined in this document are equally applicable to any learners who are vulnerable to exclusion from any sector of education (i.e. those who may be identified as having learning difficulties and/or experiencing different forms of social disadvantage).

The intention of the model policy document is to assist Member States in the process of developing policy in order to achieve the wider goal of inclusive education across all educational sectors and settings.

Learners with disabilities at all levels of education – pre-school through to adult education – are vulnerable to exclusion from educational opportunities. The World Report on Disability (2011. World Health Organisation / World Bank) estimates that there are between 93 and 150 million school-aged children with disabilities globally. Many of these learners are excluded from educational opportunities and do not complete primary education. Many more learners do not have equal access to educational opportunities as a result of their learning difficulty, or exclusion factors arising from social disadvantage. >> More

The international legislative framework underpinning calls for education for all date back to the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 1960 Convention against Discrimination in Education, the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (1979) and the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child, among other normative instruments, informed the World Declaration on Education for All, adopted in Jomtien, Thailand (1990). This sets out an overall vision for ‘universalizing access to education for all children, youth and adults, and promoting equity.’ >> More

The long-term vision behind the Inclusive ICTs in Education policy is that inclusive ICTs are used effectively in education to enable all learners – in particular those with disabilities – to learn according to their individual learning preferences and to promote the long-term inclusion into wider society of learners with disabilities, particularly through enhancing their social inclusion and employment opportunities. >> More

The Policy Objectives identified in section 3 directly relate to Policy Actions that must be taken at the three levels of the inclusive education system: learner, organisational and system levels. The Policy Actions are not technology specific, rather they are activities that will not become out dated as a result of developments in technology. >> More

The Inclusive ICTs in Education policy must be linked to a clear national Implementation Strategy that provides a detailed roadmap for achieving the Policy Objectives and completing all mandatory Policy Actions at national, regional and local levels. The development of an Implementation Strategy is a mandatory step and the responsibility of the Lead Ministry. >> More

The implementation of the Inclusive ICTs in Education policy must be underpinned by a coherent and effective financing mechanism.
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