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UNICEF welcomes Sudan’s national strategy for education of children with disabilities

KHARTOUM, 19 November 2013 - Today in Khartoum, the Federal Ministry of Education launched a National Strategy for the Education of Children with Disabilities,  covering 2013-2016.

‘UNICEF is very pleased to see that the Ministry of Education has taken this critical step to give children with disabilities the chance to receive a quality education,” said Mr. Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF Representative in Sudan.  “This is a concrete example of an equity-focussed approach in the education sector and I wish to reaffirm our commitment at UNICEF to continue our support to the Ministry in taking this important piece of work forward.”

The first of its kind in Sudan, the national strategy on education for children with disabilities offers a comprehensive take on the issues and challenges affecting children with disabilities in the Sudanese school system and sets out a broad range of responses to gradually address the needs of these children.

Inclusion of children with disabilities is the cornerstone of the freshly-minted Sudanese strategy. It is also a key element in equity-informed approaches to ensure that all children – especially vulnerable children – are included and covered by essential social services such as education.

Equally important, but seldom given the deserved attention is adequate, and relevant teacher training – a critical component for inclusion.

Finally, the strategy covers the ever-present challenge of physical access, essential in the general public sphere, and crucially important in the school setting to allow children with disabilities enjoy learning, play and interaction on a par with their able-bodies peers.

According to the 2008 National Sudan Census Survey, the estimated prevalence of disability among the general public is 4.8 per cent. According to these figures, approximately 720,000 Sudanese children under the age of 18 have a disability.

In order to address the major barriers in achieving education for children with disabilities, measures must be taken to improve access to quality inclusive education. This must include increased awareness, provision of capacity development and increased allocation of funds targeting children with disabilities.

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About UNICEF
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do.  Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information, please contact:
Lone Hvass
Chief of Communication, UNICEF Sudan
Tel:+(249)156553670
lhvass@unicef.org


 

 

 

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