Inclusive education has been a universally acknowledged goal for over two decades, since Salamanca Statement (1994). This goal has been further strengthened by the Convention on the Rights of persons with disabilities (2006) and the Sustainable Development Goals (2015), the former making inclusive education a fundamental human right and the latter tying it to a broader global development agenda. The central role of the teacher cannot be underestimated if we aim to provide universal and inclusive education for all.
Note: This blog is specifically about Sierra Leone’s successful transition to a digital school census but has broader implications for other countries who plan to adopt digital tools at a wider scale to collect data and monitor education and healthcare facilities in their countries.
In April of last year, the new Minister of Finance of Sierra Leone approached the World Bank with a strong commitment to prioritize education and an intriguing request.
Apesar do enorme progresso feito para que mais crianças estejam em sala de aula, estamos no meio de uma crise global de aprendizagem, onde um grande número de crianças conclui o ensino primário sem sequer possuir competencias básicas de literacia e numeracia. O que explica este fenómeno? Para responder a esta pergunta, considere os seguintes exemplos de salas de aula onde as chances de levar os alunos ao sucesso são improváveis.
A pesar del enorme progreso realizado en lograr que haya más niños en el aula, nos encontramos en medio de una crisis global de aprendizaje, donde un gran número de niños finalizan la educación primaria sin siquiera poseer las habilidades básicas de lectura, escritura y aritmética. ¿Qué explica este fenómeno? Para responder esta pregunta, considere los siguientes ejemplos de aulas donde las posibilidades de éxito de los estudiantes son muy bajas.
Despite tremendous progress in getting children into the classroom, we are experiencing a global learning crisis, where a large share of children complete primary school lacking even basic reading, writing, and arithmetic skills. What explains this phenomenon? To answer this question, consider the following examples of classrooms that are unlikely to put students on a path to success.
Countries in Africa are facing a conundrum according to a recent World Bank flagship report, “Facing Forward: Schooling for Learning in Africa.” Over the past 10 to 25 years, many have made tremendous progress in getting children into classrooms. Yet, while total enrollment has increased, in many of these same countries primary school completion rates have not.
More than one billion people around the world experience some form of disability. Individuals with disabilities have, on average, poorer health, lower levels of employment and earnings, and higher poverty rates. Children with disabilities are especially at a disadvantage when it comes to enrolling and completing school but also how much they learn while in school. This is especially acute in Sub-Saharan Africa, where our latest research, The Challenge of Inclusive Education in Africa, shows that disability gaps in education are increasing.
The message on inclusive education is simple: Every learner matters – and matters equally.
This was the shared spirit when experts from 12 African countries came together in Nairobi, Kenya in late October for the ‘Technical Learning Session on Inclusive Education in Africa’ to share knowledge, ideas, challenges, and priorities toward inclusive education.
The ultimate barrier to education is no schooling at all. Inclusion of children with disabilities can result in significant gains to national economies helping break the cycle of poverty.