National Inclusive Education Day in Madagascar – Focus on the promotion of the rights of children and young people with disabilities
Antananarivo, 26 November, 2021 – The three Ministries in charge of education in Madagascar – namely the Ministry of National Education (MEN), the Ministry of Technical Education and Vocational Training (METFP), the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MESUPRES), in collaboration with the National Platform on Inclusive Education (PNEI) bringing together all stakeholders and partners working on the implementation of inclusive education-related programmes in Madagascar, organize the National Inclusive Education Day (JNEI) which takes place on 26 November at the Antaninarenina Garden. UNICEF – one of the partners of the National Platform on Inclusive Education – contributes technically and financially to the organization of this event.
This Day aims to alert about a situation of inequity experienced by too many children and parents in Madagascar and seeks to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4: Access for all to quality education. SDG 4 is to ensure that everyone can access quality education, on an equal footing and to enhance focus on lifelong learning. Yet in Madagascar, children and young people living with disability are most often deprived of their fundamental rights such as access to education, healthcare or the right to be heard. They are the most exposed to physical and moral violence and are excluded from humanitarian assistance. The 2018 MICS survey reveals that among children with disabilities, more than half of children with disabilities aged 6 to 10 do not attend school.
Throughout the day, various activities are scheduled. Events punctuated by interventions and activities around the theme will be held, as well as a live conference with all of the actors, awareness-raising and advocacy at the level of the three ministries in charge of education.
These activities will, among other things, promote positive behaviour aimed at development, fulfilment and effectiveness of the rights of all children and young people, in particular those living with disabilities. They also make it possible to encourage society, both the father and the mother as well as those responsible for children and young people, to integrate all girls and boys living with disability and provide them the chance to live well with their differences in the community. Decision-makers will also be reminded of their roles and responsibilities for the effective implementation of the various international conventions on the rights of children and young people, in particular those living with disabilities. Finally, the three Ministries’ staff’s knowledge about the concept of Inclusive Education in Madagascar will be reinforced at the end of this event.
But these actions cannot be limited to a single day. This event will contribute to consolidating and perpetuating the results of the actions carried out, in particular in accordance with the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development and in light of the objective of SDG4. It is also an opportunity to promote the dissemination of texts and laws relating to the rights of children and young people living with disabilities in Madagascar.
As part of the promotion of the rights of children and young people living with disabilities, UNICEF's support extends to other actions, in particular, the backing to the Ministry of National Education in carrying out several actions. These include a national diagnostic of the situation of inclusive education in Madagascar as a basis for the development of a national strategy, capacity building of the National Platform on Inclusive Education in its advocacy actions, support in the training of teachers on inclusive pedagogy and the provision of materials adapted to inclusive schools and specialized centres.
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