UNICEF launches ‘Education for Every Child’ Campaign
The initiative aims to support children with special needs to be fully involved in the learning process through the development of an online interactive platform
Sofia, 26 May 2020. UNICEF, in partnership with the Ministry of Education and Science and its sub-structure Regional Inclusive Education Support Center Sofia, launches a campaign to support online inclusive education of children with disabilities.
Despite all the national efforts, children with disabilities continue to be the most excluded from education. Changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic has made the situation even more complicated. Estimations from the Regional Inclusive Education Support Centers show that one in five children with disabilities does not receive additional support and is practically at risk to be excluded from education.
Specialists and resource teachers working with children with disabilities clearly identified the need of additional online support both for the children and their teachers and parents. In response to that need, UNICEF together with its partners will develop the first digital educational platform in the country that will make the learning process more accessible to the children. It will improve the work of all people who support the child – specialists, teachers, and parents. Apart from providing the necessary online tools it will also link together the family and the professionals. The money for the development of the platform will be fundraised through the advocacy and fundraising campaign ‘Education for Every Child’.
Actress Elena Petrova announced today as UNICEF’s newest National Goodwill Ambassador in Bulgaria becomes the face of the campaign. Vladimir Ampov-Grafa who has been UNICEF’s National Goodwill Ambassador for years also supports the campaign.
Official media partner of the ‘Education for Every Child’ campaign is the Bulgarian National Television. The campaign is supported by BG Radio and Energy Radio, EVA and Grazia magazines, online websites ‘Momichetata ot grada’ and ViewSofia, Economedia and Net Info media groups as well as by Elle Bulgaria and National Geographic Bulgaria.
Goal of the learning platform:
The ultimate goal of the platform is to provide educational resources adapted to the specific needs of the children, all gathered in one place which is something that hasn’t been done in the country so far. Teachers and parents will have available useful materials and will be supported by specialists, including through a live chat option. In this way online education will be more accessible to children with special needs and will reduce their isolation.
For the development of the platform UNICEF will include specialists, teachers and parents so that all resources to be tailored to meet the specific needs of the children in the best possible way. The building of the platform involves several stages: the development and the adaptation of the resources as well as specifying and implementing the technical platform requirements is planned for Summer 2020. UNICEF’s ambition is the platform to become operational by Autumn 2020.
‘UNICEF believes every child, regardless of disability, has the right to education that fully nurtures their potential. In the current situation various remote learning options have already been activated including delivering education through online teaching, digital access to learning materials, teaching through television. However, some groups of vulnerable children, including those with disabilities, are not able to access these opportunities. This may be due to various reasons, mainly because remote learning modalities are not adapted to their specific needs. We must make sure there are no exceptions and no child is left behind.” said Jane Muita, UNICEF Representative in Bulgaria.