How can the principles of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities be embedded in national/local policy to ensure that all learners receive a quality education?
The OoP project suggests that national legislation and education policy should actively support the principles of both UNCRC and UNCPRD and uphold the right of all learners to full participation in school with their own local peer group. This would include in particular:
- the right to access high quality, inclusive education
- non-discrimination on the grounds of disability
- the right of the child to express her/his view
- access to assistance
In addition to the right TO education therefore, it is crucial that the learner's rights WITHIN education are also respected. This will require cross ministerial approaches and collaboration at all levels to meet some of the challenges discussed in the resources set out below.
This report sets out:
- The common rights and principles from the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the UN Convention on the Rights of persons with Disabilities ( page 35)
- The legal framework at EU level - key findings (page 36)
- The right to Inclusive Education (page 50, pages 97-105, page 134) as background to the further reading and suggested discussions below.
Eurochild and Inclusion Europe: Children's Rights for All! The Implementation of UNCRC for Children with Intellectual Disabilities (2011)
This report summarises some of the challenges faced by countries across Europe (pages17-23).
This report by Save the Children (UK) - pages 67-83 - analyses the UNCRC and UNCRPD to support understanding of the rights of children with disabilities.
Read pages 106/7 on the right to education and page 117 - Principles and Advocacy Tips.
Pages 25-27 of this UNICEF position paper set out the relevant human rights standards (UNCRC and UNCPRD) and underpinning principles.
Talking points - legislation
- How does your national legislation and policy address both age and disability to ensure the rights of children with disabilities are considered?
- Are legislation and policy documents written in rights-based or needs-based language? What are the implications of making this change?
- How far does the current legislation reflect the obligation to provide support and reasonable accommodation for children with disabilities?
Page 47 of the UNICEF paper provides a suggested conceptual framework of performance indicators for an inclusive education system.
Talking point - indicators
- What information/data would be available to support these indicators in your country? What might be done to close any information ‘gaps’ and support judgments about progress in these areas? (See also question on indicators in the yellow section of this resource)
This UNICEF position paper (page 10) sets out key points regarding a different pedagogical approach.
Talking points - increasing participation
- Consider how far these points apply to your own curriculum and pedagogical approaches. What indicates that learners are participating - and not just present?
- How far are children with disabilties included in the life of the school and the local community?
- How far do processes for monitoring and evaluation support the participation rights of children and their families to avoid them becoming passive recipients of services?
(See also resources in the pink section of this resource)
This report highlights the fundamentals of inclusion (Introduction page 3, page 9) and changing attitudes (pages 11-13) (See also resources in the blue section of this resource)
Talking point - reducing attitudinal barriers
What action can be taken to reduce the attitudinal barriers that lead to discrimination?
This paper, written for the project seminars, summarises some country information and poses some questions for discussion (pages 2-4).
UNICEF Legislation and Policies for Inclusive Education
This booklet and webinar provide an overall view of the rights-based approach to inclusive education, including an overview of the broad measures across government needed to underpin inclusive education.