Prospects of development of inclusive education in Tajikistan to be discussed in Dushanbe
11 November 2013
The 2nd international conference entitled “Inclusive Education: Challenges and Search for Solutions” will take place in Dushanbe on November 21-22.
The conference is reportedly organized by the Tajik Branch of Open Society Institute/Assistance Foundation (OSI/AF-Tajikistan), the Ministry of education of Tajikistan and the Academy of Education of Tajikistan.
According to OSI/A-Tajikistan, the conference will be held within the framework of implementation of the “National Concept of Inclusive Education for Children with Disability in Tajikistan 2011-2015.”
The main goal of the conference is in promoting consolidation of efforts of specialists working in the area of legislation, science, practitioners and civil society for the development of inclusive education as the basis of open and inclusive society.
The conference participants are reportedly expected to discuss issues related to implementation of the “National Concept of Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities in Tajikistan 2011-2015,” review of the legislation framework on inclusive education; compliance with international treaties on human rights ratified in Tajikistan, role of the civil society/public organizations on issues of early childhood development; ensuring access to education and implementation of inclusive education, experience of countries in introduction of Early Childhood Intervention Program, addressing the staff policy issues for working with children that have special educational needs, per capita financing in the context of inclusive education in Tajikistan, and development of teaching materials in native language for children with hearing and speech impairment.
Format of the conference: plenary sessions, discussions, site visits to organizations working with disabled children.
The Government of Tajikistan adopted the “National Concept on Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities in the Republic of Tajikistan for 2011-2015” in 2011. The goal of the National Concept on Inclusive Education is to create a national model for inclusion of people with disabilities into the general educational process. The concept has focused intervention in three areas: education, health care and social welfare.
Inclusion in the context of education is the practice, in which students with special educational needs spend most or all of their time with non-disabled students. Implementation of this practice varies; schools can use it for selected students with mild to severe special needs. Inclusive education differs from previously held notions of ‘integration’ and ‘mainstreaming’, which tended to be concerned principally with disability and ‘special educational needs’ and implied learners changing or becoming ‘ready for’ accommodation by the mainstream. By contrast, inclusion is about the child’s right to participate and the school’s duty to accept the child. Inclusion rejects the use of special schools or classrooms to separate students with disabilities from students without disabilities. A premium is placed upon full participation by students with disabilities and upon respect for their social, civil, and educational rights.
Fully inclusive schools, which are rare, no longer distinguish between “general education” and “special education” programs; instead, the school is restructured so that all students learn together.