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Education and Employment

32 million children with disabilities will not return to school this year

Montreal –  In many parts of the world, it is the start of the new school year. Yet, in 2019, more than 32 million children with disabilities in low- and middle-income countries were denied access to school. Children with disabilities are the most marginalized and the first to be excluded from the education system.

There are some 264 million children and adolescents out of school worldwide and, as things stand, we will not achieve the goal to provide quality and inclusive education for all by 2030 – unless we urgently accelerate progress for the furthest behind groups. In low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), more than 32 million children with disabilities are out of school and have no access to education.

Factors limiting access to education for children with disabilities

  • At the local and community level, many parents and community members, who are not sufficiently informed or made aware of issues faced by people with disabilities, have negative and stigmatising attitudes (including those related to traditional beliefs and practices towards children and people with disabilities.)
  • In schools, teaching practices are not sufficiently adapted to the needs of some children with disabilities.
  • The school environment is often difficult to access and teaching and learning materials are poorly adapted.
  • We note a lack of inclusive education policies at a national and local level.

Humanity & Inclusion Canada has been working in the field of education and in the inclusive education sector since 2004. Its work focuses particularly on children with disabilities – the most vulnerable and excluded young learners in the world, in low-income countries and in development and emergency contexts.

 

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