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Pivoting to inclusion : Leveraging lessons from the COVID-19 crisis for learners with disabilities

McCLAIN-NHALPO,Charlotte Vuyiswa
KULBIR SINGH,Ruchi
MARTIN,Anna Hill
et al
August 2020

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As governments respond to the Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the global community must ensure that persons with disabilities are included. This will require disability inclusion to be considered in all interconnected sectors; education, health, social protection, and inclusion from the planning stage all the way through to delivery and recovery efforts that are inclusive of all and are sufficiently differentiated to meet the specific needs of children with disabilities. The issues paper focuses on the following objectives: (1) addressing education, social needs, barriers, and issues for learners with disabilities at a global, regional, and country-level during the COVID-19 crisis; and (2) recommending practices for education and social inclusion, and reasonable accommodations utilizing the twin track approach and principles of universal design for learning.

Covid-19 tip sheets & book of flip charts

ENABLEMENT
August 2020

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In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, Enablement developed tip sheets on four main topics for Light for the World:


- Eating and drinking
- Epilepsy, Nodding Syndrome and medication
- Active lifestyle
- Communication


These are meant to support those working with and/or caring for children and adults with disabilities. The tip sheets include visuals and some supporting text.

The book of flip charts carries the same content as the tip sheets, with visuals on one side for the caregivers of people with disabilities to see, and slightly more elaborate text on the other page for the fieldworker.

Segregated education as a challenge to inclusive processes: a total population study of Swedish teachers’ views on education for pupils with intellectual disability

GÖRANSSON, Kerstin
BENGTSSON, Karin
HANSSON, Susanne
KLANG, Nina
LINDQVIST, Gunilla
NILHOLM, Claes
2020

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Many pupils with disabilities receive schooling in segregated contexts, such as special classes or special schools. Furthermore, the percentage of pupils educated in segregated settings has increased in many European countries. Studies suggest that there is high commitment to the general ideology of inclusive education among teachers in ‘regular’ education in many countries. This survey study investigates the views of teachers in segregated types of school about education. A questionnaire was sent out, in 2016, to all Swedish teachers (N = 2871, response rate 57.7%) working full time in special classes for pupils with intellectual disability (ID). On a general level results show that there is a strong commitment to preserving a segregated school setting for pupils with ID, a limited desire to cooperate with colleagues from ‘regular schools’ and a view that schooling and teaching are not quite compatible with the idea of inclusive education. The results highlight the importance of investigating processes of resistance within segregated schools to the development of inclusive schools and education systems. We argue that, while research and debate about inclusive education are important, both are insufficient without analyses of existing types of segregated schooling.

Children with disabilities and COVID-19

UNICEF
July 2020

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This guidance has been produced for UNICEF’s East Asia and the Pacific Regional Office and UNICEF Australia. This document is intended for frontline workers, including UNICEF partners, health personnel, social workers, teachers, help line staff and community volunteers engaged in the COVID-19 response. It is recommended that this document is read in conjunction with the Minimum Care Package, CBM’s Disability Inclusion in COVID-19 Preparedness and Response guidance note, UNICEF’s EAPR Child Protection Emergency Preparedness and Response to COVID-19 and the global Technical Note: Protection of Children during the Coronavirus Pandemic

Meeting basic needs for women and girls with disabilities during COVID-19

WOMEN ENABLED INTERNATIONAL
UN WOMEN
July 2020

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In March and April 2020, Women Enabled International (WEI) conducted an online qualitative survey of issues impacting women, girls, non-binary, trans, and gender non-conforming (TGNC) persons with disabilities, which received 100 responses from around the world. These individuals identified that COVID-19 had had a significant impact on their ability to meet basic needs, achieve an adequate standard of living, and live independently, including because of issues related to employment and income, access to support services and assistive devices, access to public transportation, and access to assistance from friends, family, and the public. This policy brief will discuss some of the findings from this survey to illustrate how the pandemic worsens existing realities of marginalised communities and will provide recommendation to stakeholders, in particular UN agencies and UN Country Teams and their partners, on how to mitigate adverse effects of pre-existing inequalities faced by women, girls and TGNC persons with disabilities, including on how to engage with networks and organizations as active agents in the process of ‘building back.’

Covid-19 minimum care package for children with disabilities

UNICEF
CBM AUSTRALIA
July 2020

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This guidance has been produced by CBM Australia for UNICEF’s East Asia and the Pacific Regional Office and UNICEF Australia. This document provides background, identifies key risks, risk mitigation measures, and provides links to key resources available to support UNICEF staff and partners in designing a COVID-19 response that is inclusive of children and youth with disabilities. It briefly presents information known at this time (May 2020) while recognising that as the pandemic evolves resources and evidence will also evolve.

Exploring Critical Issues in the Ethical Involvement of Children with Disabilities in Evidence Generation and Use

THOMPSON, Stephen
CANNON, Mariah
WICKENDEN, Mary
2020

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This research brief details the main ethical challenges and corresponding mitigation strategies identified in the literature with regard to the ethical involvement of children with disabilities in evidence generation activities. Evidence generation activities are defined as per the UNICEF Procedure for Ethical Standards in Research, Evaluation, Data Collection and Analysis (2015), as research, evaluation, data collection and analysis. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (art. 12) states that children have the right to form and express views freely in all matters affecting them and that the views of the child must be given due weight in accordance with her/his age and maturity.

 

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (art. 7) states that children with disabilities must enjoy human rights and freedoms on an equal basis with other children, and that they have a right to express their views freely and should be provided with assistance where necessary to realize that right. The two conventions in general, and these two articles specifically, frame this research brief, which aims to encourage practitioners to explicitly consider ethical ways to involve children with disabilities in evidence generation.

 

The findings detailed in this summary brief are based on a rapid review of 57 relevant papers identified through an online search using a systematic approach and consultation with experts. There was a paucity of evidence focusing specifically on the ethical challenges of involving children with disabilities in evidence generation activities. The evidence that did exist in this area was found to focus disproportionately on high-income countries, with low- and middle-income countries markedly under-represented.

Education for Every Ability. A review and roadmap of disability-inclusive education in East Asia and Pacific

UNICEF EAST ASIA AND PACIFIC
July 2020

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Rapid advances in education provision over the past few decades in East Asia and Pacific has led to considerable progress in integrating out-of-school children and adolescents in basic education. However, children with disabilities continue to face many barriers to accessing and completing quality primary education. While countries increasingly recognize the importance of making education systems more disability inclusive, many challenges remain to realising inclusive education for every child

 

The Education Section of UNICEF East Asia and Pacific Regional Office (EAPRO) commissioned a review of the progress of countries and UNICEF programmes in the region in advancing inclusive education for children, as part of its continued commitment to enabling equitable access to and participation of all learners in high quality and inclusive education. The mapping has a particular focus on programmes targeted for children with disabilities of pre-primary and primary school age, implemented from 2015 to 2019. 

 

This Report analyzes successes, innovative approaches, challenges, gaps and priorities for action in the region and proposes a roadmap for advancing Inclusive Education in the region

 

Guidance Note 5: Return to School

McGEOWN, Julia
BOISSEAU, Sandra
BOHAN-JACQUOT, Sandrine
July 2020

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This guidance is part of a series to provide support during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes include #1 Inclusive Digital learning, #2 Teacher resources, #3 Home support, #4 TV and Radio Learning, and #5 Return to School.

 

10 tips are provided for returning to school during and after the Covid-19 pandemic. Tips are given to cope with school re-opening, manage learning continuity with existing constraints and build better education systems.

 

Development of self-help groups for caregivers of children with disabilities in Kilifi, Kenya: Process evaluation

GONA, Joseph K.
NEWTON, Charles
HARTLEY, Sally
BUNNING, Karen
July 2020

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Background: Caring for a child with disabilities in a resource-poor setting brings many challenges to the caregiver. We examined the development of self-help groups for caregivers in a rural part of Kenya.

 

Objectives: To conduct a process evaluation on the development of self-help groups during a 10-month set-up period, focusing on implementation and mechanisms associated with their functional status.

 

Methods: Using a realist evaluation design, we set up 20 self-help groups for 254 caregivers. An evaluation was conducted to investigate implementation and mechanisms of impact. Implementation focused on caregiver registration, community group support and monitoring visit compliance. Data were collected from group registers, records of meetings and field notes. Mechanisms of impact employed a framework of strengths–weaknesses–opportunities–threats to review the groups at the end of the 10-month set-up period.

 

Results: Recruitment resulted in registration of 254 participants to 18 groups – two groups disbanded early. Post-evaluation included 11 active and 7 inactive groups. Compliance with the monitoring visits was consistent across the active groups. All groups engaged in ‘merry-go-round’ activities. The active groups were characterised by strong leadership and at least one successful income generation project; the inactive had inconsistent leadership and had dishonest behaviour both within the group and/or externally in the community. Mediators associated with functional status included the following: available literacy and numeracy skills, regular meetings with consistent attendance by the members, viable income generating projects, geographical proximity of membership and strong leadership for managing threats.

 

Conclusion: Self-help groups have the potential to progress in resource-poor settings. However, critical to group progression are literacy and numeracy skills amongst the members, their geographical proximity, regular meetings of the group, viable income generating projects and strong leadership.

 

 

African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020

Discussion about inclusive education considering IDA report "What an inclusive, equitable, quality education means to us" and Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report 2020

Hosted by: INTERNATIONAL DISABILITY ALLIANCE (IDA)
July 2020

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A discussion of inclusive education based on Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report: "Inclusion and education: All means all. Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report 2020", published Jun 2020 and IDA report:  "What an inclusive, equitable, quality education means to us", published Mar 2020.

Measuring treatment outcome in children with developmental coordination disorder; responsiveness of six outcome measures

HEUS, Inge
WEEZENBERG, Daphne
SEVERIJEN, Sebastiaam
VLIELAND, Thea Vliet
VAN DER HOLST, Menno
July 2020

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Purpose: Although measuring outcome of rehabilitation in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder is considered important no consensus exists on which instruments to use. An important attribute of a measurement instrument would be that it is sensitive to clinical changes. The aim of this prospective, observational study was therefore to investigate the responsiveness of six potentially suitable instruments.

 

Methods: Forty-one children (34 boys, median age 7.8 years, Inter Quartile Range: 7.2–9.2) receiving multidisciplinary rehabilitation treatment for Developmental Coordination Disorder were included (mean treatment time: 32.8 h, Standard Deviation 7.3). The following instruments were applied before and after rehabilitation: Movement-Assessment-Battery-Children-2 (MABC-2), Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM), Systematic detection writing problems (SOS-2-NL), DCD-daily, Behaviour Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF), and TNO-AZL children’s Quality of Life questionnaire (TACQOL)). Change-scores (paired t-test/Wilcoxon-test) and responsiveness (Effect-sizes and Standardized-Response-Means) were calculated.

 

Results: Significant differences over time were found for the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure, DCDdaily and Movement-Asessment-Battery-Children-2 (p < 0.05). The responsiveness of these instruments was moderate-high (Canadian Occupational Performance Measure-performance Effect-Size:1.70/Standardized-Response-Mean:1.81, Canadian Occupational Performance Measure-satisfaction Effect-Size:1.65/Standardized-Response-Mean 1.53; DCDdaily-total-score Effect-Size:0.40/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.62, DCDdaily-Quality-score Effect-Size:0.74/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.89, DCDdaily-time-score Effect-Size:0.21/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.43; MABC-2-total-score Effect-Size:0.42/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.43, MABC-2-Ball-skills-score Effect-Size:0.33/Standardized-Response-Mean:0.36). Systematic detection of writing problems (SOS-2-NL), Behaviour Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) and TNO-AZL children’s Quality of Life questionnaire (TACQOL) were not responsive to change.

 

Conclusion: Although the Movement-Assessment-Battery-Children-2 test is the most widely used instrument when measuring rehabilitation outcome in Developmental Coordination Disorder, the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure and DCDdaily seem to be more responsive and constitute a valuable addition.

Inclusion and education: All means all. Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report 2020

GLOBAL EDUCATION MONITORING REPORT TEAM
June 2020

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The 2020 GEM Report assesses progress towards Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4) on education and its ten targets, as well as other related education targets in the SDG agenda. The Report also addresses inclusion in education, drawing attention to all those excluded from education, because of background or ability. The Report is motivated by the explicit reference to inclusion in the 2015 Incheon Declaration, and the call to ensure an inclusive and equitable quality education in the formulation of SDG 4, the global goal for education. It reminds us that, no matter what argument may be built to the contrary, we have a moral imperative to ensure every child has a right to an appropriate education of high quality.

The Report also explores the challenges holding us back from achieving this vision and demonstrates concrete policy examples from countries managing to tackle them with success. These include differing understandings of the word inclusion, lack of teacher support, absence of data on those excluded from education, inappropriate infrastructure, persistence of parallel systems and special schools, lack of political will and community support, untargeted finance, uncoordinated governance, multiple but inconsistent laws, and policies that are not being followed through.

Disability Inclusive Development - Kenya Situational Analysis

ROHWERDER, Brigitte
June 2020

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This situational analysis (SITAN) addresses the question: “what is the current situation for persons with disabilities in Kenya?”. It has been prepared for the Disability Inclusive Development programme (which works on access to education, jobs, healthcare, and reduced stigma and discrimination for persons with disabilities in Bangladesh, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, and Tanzania), to better understand the current context, including COVID-19, and available evidence in Kenya. It will be helpful for anyone interested in disability inclusion in Kenya, especially in relation to stigma, employment, education, health, and humanitarian issues. This SITAN has been briefly updated from the April 2019 SITAN.

Ensuring an inclusive return to school for children with disabilities

CBM Australia
June 2020

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This guidance has been produced by CBM Australia for UNICEF’s East Asia and the Pacific Regional Office and UNICEF Australia. The document is intended for UNICEF staff, education policy makers and planners in the East Asia and Pacific Region. Its purpose is to provide guidance on critical considerations and actions that should be undertaken to ensure an inclusive return to school for children with disabilities, as children return to school after the temporary closure of schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Education for All’ under lockdown: the path ahead for inclusion of children with disabilities

NATH, Seema
June 2020

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During the COVID-19 pandemic, schools around the world experience extraordinary times and as education moves online, those who have historically faced marginalisation find themselves facing new challenges to access education. The situation is disproportionately affecting those within marginalised communities in India and across the globe. In education, these disadvantages are amplified for learners with disabilities belonging to low socio-economic backgrounds. Lessons to be learned from schools that are incorporating the principles of inclusion and social justice while approaching these challenges are highlighted.

Pre-Primary and Primary Inclusive Education for Tanzania (PPPIET) – Foundation Phase : Report on Participatory Research to Inform Design of New Inclusive Education Model in Tanzania

JUDGE, Emma
June 2020

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The Disability Inclusive Development (DID) consortium, a UK Department for International Development (DFID) funded initiative, is working together on the Pre-Primary and Primary Inclusive Education in Tanzania (PPPIET) programme whose ultimate goal is to foster quality sustainable inclusive education for all children with disabilities at scale across Tanzania in mainstream pre-primary and primary government schools. To achieve this, it aims to support collective, coordinated systems change by establishing an agreed common model of basic inclusive pre-primary and primary education in mainstream government schools, and galvanising significant progress in spreading its systematic implementation for all children with disabilities across Tanzania. 

 

This task requires the cooperation of government, civil society and Disabled People’s Organisations (DPOs) to achieve real change.  No single organisation or government department can achieve inclusive education on its own. Pooling the skills and resources and exchanging learnings to achieve quality inclusive education of children can help all involved. Working together will build collective commitment and action, not just amongst DID consortium members but also across government, donors, education actors and the private sector. 

 

Part of this process was to conduct a participatory field research to gather evidence on the current provision of support services needed for inclusive education and identify gaps that need to be filled in the future. The exercise also served to identify key challenges that need addressing to facilitate the removal of legal, policy, systemic, physical, communication and language, social, financial and attitudinal barriers. The findings from the research were intended to identify the priority components that need addressing in the design of an inclusive education design model and the drivers of accountability, i.e. the agencies/stakeholders responsible for implementing the required system changes.

 

Summary of key findings

The Government of Tanzania has continually demonstrated its support and commitment to inclusive education evidenced by the many comprehensive policies for inclusive education, including the National Inclusive Education Strategy (NSIE) 2018 – 2021.  Through these policies, it is actively working to improve the educational environment but the journey is long and requires significant system changes for the policies to be effectively implemented, which needs collaboration, cooperation, planning, and strategic resourcing across multiple ministries, NGOs, DPOs, and the private sector. 

 

To achieve inclusive education, a rights-based approach to education needs to be adopted, focusing on identifying and removing the barriers to access and quality learning for every child, including appropriate infrastructure changes in schools, changing attitudes, and providing additional support to girls and boys with disabilities through learning support assistants.  There also needs to be a fundamental shift towards child-centred pedagogy in teacher training and curriculum development to meet the needs of all learners, including having a mandatory module on inclusive education in all teacher training curricula.  Over time, this will help develop teachers’ confidence and positive attitudes towards teaching children with disabilities and achieve impact at scale.  Strengthening the capacities of all teachers, improving classroom management, increasing awareness about inclusive education for all stakeholders, and improving access to screening and early identification, health, rehabilitation services, and affordable assistive devices are all contributing factors to achieving inclusive education in Tanzania.

 

Systems change to improve learning and support for children with disabilities takes time and requires a significant investment of resources and budget allocation by government and service providers.  However, inclusive education can be cost-effective compared with the cost of segregation and special schools, particularly where ministries work together to ensure a more ‘strategic allocation of existing funds, promoting universal design and co-operation agreements among multiple ministries’.   Developing partnerships with the private sector to improve the physical infrastructure of schools and access to affordable assistive devices can also help reduce the cost of inclusion.

 

Inclusive education is a cross-cutting issue that requires the commitment and accountability of multiple stakeholders across government ministries to ensure its effective implementation.  This includes the MOEST, MOHCDGEC, MOFP, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the President's Office, Regional Administration and Local Government (PORALG). 

 

It is anticipated that to achieve successful implementation and scaling up of the model design for inclusive education, there will need to be a systematic and phased approach to implementing the recommendations in this report over the short, medium and long term.  It is acknowledged that this process will take considerable time to implement and can only be successfully achieved over a period of years with the support and increased understanding of all stakeholders.  There is no quick-fix solution to inclusive education.  It requires changing long-established systems and adjusting services, including health and education, training, and attitudes.  There is also no financial short cut. 

 

However, while some recommendations require significant investment, others can be achieved in the current context without significant monetary investment.  For example, changing the curriculum for all teacher training to ensure inclusive education is included as a standard module will help transform the approach of teachers and the inclusion of children with disabilities in learning.  Raising awareness of inclusive education for all stakeholders, including policy-makers and implementers will also help increase understanding of the long-term system changes required and reduce stigma and discrimination.  Inclusive education can only be achieved in an inclusive society and it needs collective effort from the government, parents, community, and all stakeholders for effective implementation.

Guidance Note 4, TV and Radio Learning

McGEOWN, Julia
BOISSEAU, Sandra
BOHAN-JACQUOT, Sandrine
June 2020

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This guidance is part of a series to provide support during the Covid-19 crisis. The guidance notes include #1- Inclusive Digital learning #2 - Teacher resources and #3 Home support. #4 TV and Radio Learning #5Return to school.

 

A pictorial based summary of the top 10 tips is provided followed by explanation of the resources and more information about top tips, with hyperlinks of relevant resources.

Parental perspectives on care for sleep in children with cerebral palsy: a wake-up call

HULST, Raquel Y
VOORMAN, Jeanine M
PILLEN, Sigrid
KETELAAR. Marjolijn
VISSER-MEILY Johanna M A
VERSCHUREN, Olaf
June 2020

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Purpose: Sleep problems are common in children with cerebral palsy (CP) and have a large impact on child health and family functioning. This qualitative study aimed to explore parental perspectives regarding the care for sleep of their young child (age 1–8 years) with CP.

 

Materials and methods: Individual, semi-structured interviews were conducted with eighteen parents of a child with CP (GMFCS levels I-V). Inductive thematic analysis of the data was performed within each of the three preidentified domains: 1) Current situation; 2) Concerns; 3) Needs.

 

Results: In total, sixteen themes were identified across the three domains. Within the families’ Current situation, parents expressed various issues concerning the care for sleep of their child both at night and during daytime, which are hampered by perceived deficiencies in healthcare, such as limited attention for sleep and lack of knowledge among health professionals. Themes within the Concerns and Needs domains encompassed experiences in the home environment relating to child, family and social aspects, while experiences in the healthcare setting included clinical practices and attitudes of healthcare professionals, as well as the broader organisation of care for sleep.

 

Conclusions: Parents face numerous challenges caring for their child’s sleep and the burden placed on families by sleep problems is underappreciated. In order to break the vicious circle of sleep problems and their disastrous consequences on the wellbeing of families, we need to wake up to parent-identified issues and shortcomings in healthcare. Care for sleep should be integrated into paediatric rehabilitation through routine inquiries, using a family-centered and multidisciplinary approach.

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