New Delhi to host conference on inclusive education

NEW DELHI: Co-partnered by Brotherhood Delhi and Centre for Disability Studies and Action (CDSA); School of Social Work of Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai; and The Cradle, New Delhi; the conference is based on the premise that ‘all students can learn together in regular schools’.

Boy sitting in wheelchair in school against volumes of books on bookshelf in library.According to the organisers of the conference, children with disabilities must be afforded equal opportunity for education in schools. And, the schools are required to be ‘meet educational needs of all students irrespective of their social, economic, ethnic, linguistic and religious background. It implies that schools will have to meet the challenges responding to diverse educational needs of students’ since ‘every learner matters and matters equally’.

“Equal education opportunity envisages barrier-free access and participation in school activities. Besides physical access, equal education opportunity for access to curriculum is ensured for all learners. Curriculum and associated assessment are directed to success of all students according to their potential,” states the concept note of the conference.

The themes of the conference are: Role of School Management Committee and Leadership; Admission Policy; Curriculum and Assessment; Classroom Management; Classroom Practices; Instructional Practices; School Environment; Teacher Development; ICT; Assistive Technology and Assistive Devices for facilitating curriculum transactions.

The conference besides discussing the research papers on the theme of the conference, key notes and panels will also discuss the quality Indicators have been classified into sixteen areas such as . School Management Committee (SMC); leadership; role of the SMC defined in the school manual; school environment; responsibility and authority; admission policy; collaborative planning meeting; inclusive curriculum; instructional practices; assessment and evaluation; individual student supports; parents and family support; staff development; health and safety; medical facilities; and canteen.

The concept note also reminds that the government policies have evolved to be responsive to inclusive education. Since 1990s, the seeds could be traced to the National Policy of Education (NPE) and Programme of Action 1986 and 1992 supported by Salamanca Declaration 1994. The Right to Education Act 2009 and the Rights of Persons with Disability Act 2016 (RPD Act) further reinforced the government policy. The policy is based on the expectation that children who learn together learn to live together.

Source: merinews

Conference on disability opens in Ghana

KUMASHI, GHANA: A two-day international conference to identify effective ways to mainstream disability issues into the nation’s development agenda has opened in Kumasi.

Hosted by the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), it is discussing a wide range of issues – barriers to employment, healthcare, access to criminal justice, and educational opportunities for persons with disabilities.

Practicing inclusive early childhood development, disability and leadership, access to assistive technology for persons with disabilities and inclusion of disability studies as a course in educational institutions are also on the table.

The meeting is being held under the theme “Disability and inclusion in Africa – the role of assistive technology”, and supported jointly by the African Network for Evidence-to-Action in Disability (AfriNEAD) and Stellenbosch University, South Africa.

Ghana, the United States (US), United Kingdom (UK), Switzerland, Norway, Ireland, Belgium, Nigeria, South Africa, Malawi, Kenya, Zambia, Namibia, Uganda, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, Cameroon and Botswana are participating.

Professor Gubela Mji, President of AfriNEAD, expressed concern about what she said was the seeming reluctance of most of the countries to recognize and implement the United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability (CRPD).

“Our governments are not so much enthused about advancing the cause of persons with disabilities, and this is a worry given the fact that,  substantial number of the African population had one form of disability or the other”, she added.

She spoke of the determination of her organization to create the needed platform and work together with government agencies, universities, rights-based and civil society organizations to uphold policies and programmes calibrated to positively impact the lives persons with disabilities.

Prof Mji said everything should be done to eliminate all forms of discrimination, stereotypes and prejudices that inhibited the development of those with disability.

It is estimated that about 10 per cent of Africa’s population is disabled, and the factors contributing to this include accidents, violence, birth defects, diseases and ageing.

Ms. Otiko Afisa Djaba, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, said the government had begun the process to implement the Ghana Standards Accessibility Designs policy.

This, she said, would compel owners of all public buildings to work towards making their facilities disability-friendly.

Plans were also far advanced to amend the Disability Act to bring it in tune with the UN-CRPD to efficiently promote the welfare and development of people with disability.

Prof Kwasi Obiri Danso, Vice-Chancellor of KNUST, in a speech read for him, said a recent study by the College of Health Science showed that many persons with disabilities had little knowledge of their rights.

This, he noted, was making it difficult for them to demand equal opportunities in education, employment and healthcare, among other things.

It was against this background that the conference was important and a right step, he added.

Source: GNA

Penn State to host National Autism Conference from July 31 to Aug 3

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA.: Educators, service providers and parents will gather at Penn State during a four-day national conference to share best practices on how to improve language and self-advocacy skills for children with autism.

“We want to help students become more independent and use the skills they have to make a difference in the world,” said Mike Miklos, a behavior analyst and certified school psychologist who works as an educational consultant for the Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network. “We’re really focused on instruction and how to best use the current and best practice guidelines to really make a difference in charting a course for students.”

The National Autism Conference will be held from July 31 to Aug. 3 at The Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center at Innovation Park. The conference welcomes parents, educators and service providers to learn about autism research updates and to promote evidence-based interventions for school-based services. Autism affects 1 in 68 children, including 1 in 42 boys.

The conference’s 80 sessions will focus on establishing instruction methods that will help students become more independent, and providing attendees with skills to aid students’ transitions to postsecondary education and employment. Several sessions will include discussions on how educators can help increase memory skills for students in school settings, and speakers will also share the services and best practices available from around the world.

The conference also features activities for children with autism, including a science camp that consists of hands-on experiments; the Children’s Institute; and the Art of Expression exhibit. More than 25 sessions will be streamed live at the conference’s website.

Dr. Vincent Carbone, who is a board certified behavior analyst and director of autism treatment clinics in New York, Boston and the United Arab Emirates, will deliver the opening keynote address, “B.F. Skinner’s Legacy to Education.” The address will highlight some of the important contributions Skinner made to education, such as immediate reinforcement, measurable behavioral objectives and active student responding when working with students with autism.

“To be successful in college and careers, young adults with autism would benefit from educational programs that emphasize effective interpersonal social skills and self-management skills,” Carbone said. “Teachers trained as behavior analysts are well prepared to provide students with the necessary instruction.”

The National Autism Conference is hosted by the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education, PaTTAN and Penn State’s College of Education. The conference is administered by Penn State Conferences and Institutes.

For more information, go to http://autism.outreach.psu.edu/

 

WebFirst Conference 2017 Set for July 17 at University of Arkansas

FAYETTEVILLE, ARK.: The fifth annual WebFirst Conference will take place from 8 a.m. – 3:45 p.m. Friday, July 14, at the Donald W. Reynolds Center at the University of Arkansas.

Conference participants sitting and listening in lecture hall This conference is designed to bring campus web content contributors and managers together to network, learn more about web best practices and share ideas with their fellow campus web community. The conference is free and open to all University of Arkansas employees as well as neighboring Arkansas colleges and universities.

The conference will kick off at 8 a.m. on Friday, July 14 with breakfast round tables covering topics including WordPress, content, social media and more. Tables will also be open for additional discussion or networking opportunities.

Presentations will take place from 9 until 11:50 a.m. with nine different topics to choose from, including Content, OU Campus, Sharepoint & Office 365, Social Media, WordPress, Web Accessibility and more. Our presenters include campus experts in various areas from several departments as well as a representative from OmniUpdate.

This year’s conference has been extended to include an afternoon panel discussion on Content Marketing, Mobile First, User Stories and Story Boarding. The Panel includes Blake Puryear, CTO of Hayseed Ventures, Kendall Curlee, director of communications at the Honors College, Taylor McGillis, digital media for Athletics and Chris Nixon, director of digital design and development.

Following the panel discussion are three afternoon workshops to choose from: Digital Accessibility, Writing for the Web and Site Help/Cleanup for OU Campus and WordPress. The workshops will last an hour and a half and will include hands-on exercises so be sure to bring your laptops.

This year’s conference is sponsored by Chartwells and Arsaga’s Coffee Roasters.

Conference promotes rights of persons with disabilities

HANOI: International cooperation is crucial to successfully realising the rights of people with disabilities, heard a conference jointly held by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) and Caritas – a Catholic charitable organisation in Hanoi on June 23.

This is part of the activities in preparation for the country’s first report onthe implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons withDisabilities (UNCRPD) to the UN in the coming time.

The promotion and protection of the rights of persons with disabilities is apriority in Vietnam’s policies towards this group, affirmed participants at the event. They said it has been represented through a systemof legal regulations and the country’s ratification of the UNCRPD in 2015.

In the past years,international cooperation in the field has been consolidated and promotion of disabled people’s rights has drawn attention from numerous internationalorganisations and non-governmental organisations.

The attendants also shared experience in international collaboration at the event.

Some representatives asked the MoLISA to further support for localities inproviding healthcare for Persons with disabilities. They also suggested that relevantbranches set up specific support policies and encourage investment in rehabilitation centres for persons with disabilities.

Vietnam has around 7.2 million people with disabilities, accounting for 7.8 percent of the population, one of the high levels in the Asia- Pacific. More than half (58 percent) of the disabled population are women, 28.3 percent are children and 15 percent live in poverty, according to statistics in 2016 of the National Committee for People with Disabilities.

MoLISA’s statistics showed that around 900,000 people with disabilities are receiving monthly allowance. All centrally-governed cities and provinces have built rehabilitation facilities for persons with disabilities. During 2011-2015, around 140,000 people with disabilities received vocational training and found jobs through State-sponsored programmes.

Source: VNA

‘Unprecedented’ conference on rights of persons with disabilities gets under way at UN

NEW YORK: A major intergovernmental meeting got underway at the United Nations today, bringing together a wide range of stakeholders to ensure the full implementation of a landmark treaty on the rights of persons with disabilities.

“The Convention [on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, or CRPD] is one of the most progressive human rights treaties, recognizing the role of the people it is trying to impact,” Georgi Panayotov, the Permanent Representative of Bulgaria to the UN and the President of the 10th session of the Conference of States Parties to CRPD, said at a press conference today at the UN Headquarters in New York.

“This is the beginning of the second decade of the CRPD, in the first decade it saw nearly universal ratification [and now] we will have to achieve universal ratification,” added Theresia Degener, the Chair of the Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities – a body of independent UN human rights experts who monitor the implementation of the Convention by its states parties – calling on all stakeholders to protect the normative standard set by the Convention.

Upholding these normative standards and ensuring legal capacity, institutionalization, medical treatment, as well as laws and policies to ensure non-discrimination and full participation of all persons with disabilities are extremely important, she highlighted.

In the same vein, Collin Allen, the Chair of International Disability Alliance, expressed commitment on behalf of organizations of persons with disabilities to work with governments and States parties on the implementation of the Convention.

“We want to ensure that persons with disabilities are heard, and most importantly, involved so that we have meaningful participation and full inclusion,” he said, assisted by sign-language interpreter.

We want to ensure that persons with disabilities are heard, and most importantly, involved so that we have meaningful participation and full inclusion Collin Allen, Chair of International Disability Alliance
“When we say – nothing about us, without us – it is very significant,” he added, recalling the major achievements of the CRPD over the last decade and highlighting that persons with disabilities “as the experts” on the issue are critical to realizing the aspirations of the Convention.

Held under the theme of ‘inclusion and full participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in the implementation of the Convention,’ the current session of the Conference of the States Parties will also discuss addressing the impact of multiple discrimination on persons with disabilities and promoting their participation for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in line with CRPD.

It will also seek to ensure inclusion and full participation of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action, as well as promoting inclusive urban development and implementation of the New Urban Agenda.

Also speaking today, Catalina Devandas Aguilar, the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities termed the Conference as an “unprecedented” one and hailed the efforts of its bureau to ensure that has full and direct participation of persons with disabilities.

However, she also expressed concern over the lack of accurate and complete data on persons with disabilities, calling for a clear recommendation on ensuring disaggregated data as well as methodology to collect it.

“Without baseline data, we will not be able to measure any impact of important tools [such as the SDGs and CRPD on] advancing the cause of persons with disabilities,” said the Special Rapporteur.

Special Rapporteurs are appointed by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a specific human rights theme or a country situation. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

10th Conference of States Parties to the CRPD

 

NEW YORK: The 10th session of the Conference of States Parties to the CRPD (COSP10) will take place from 13 to 15 June 2017 at UN Headquarters in New York. The COSP is one of the largest and most diverse disability meetings in the world.

Flags in front of UN HeadquartersThe main theme of COSP10 is: “The Second Decade of the CRPD: Inclusion and full participation of persons with disabilities and their representative organizations in the implementation of the Convention”, as well as sub-themes: “Addressing the impact of multiple discrimination on persons with disabilities and promoting their participation and multi-stakeholder partnerships for achieving the SDGs in line with the CRPD”,

“Inclusion and full participation of persons with disabilities in humanitarian action”, and “Promoting inclusive urban development and implementation of the New Urban Agenda – Habitat III”. The Bureau (elect) are: Bulgaria (President), and (Vice-Presidents) Ecuador, Germany, Sri Lanka and Tunisia. On 12 June, day prior to the opening of COSP10, the CRPD Civil Society Forum will be held organized by civil society organizations, including organizations of persons with disabilities. DESA will be continuing previous practices by organizing its Forum on Disability and Development in conjunction with the COSP10 to focus on pertinent issues, such as the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and promoting accessible and inclusive urban development.

NGO registration and new NGO accreditation, as well as application for side-events and exhibits are now available on the UN Enable website, go to https://goo.gl/yKYZQq

DMU Annual Conference 2017 – Universal Design for Inclusion

UK: The experience of students with disabilities following substantial changes to the Disabled Students’ Allowances system will be the primary focus of this year’s De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) Annual Conference 2017.

Universal Design for LearningThis important subject matter will build on other significant topics discussed at previous DMU conferences as part of its sector-leading drive to make higher education accessible to all and to encourage further development of inclusive practice.

The event, entitled Universal Design for Inclusion, takes place at the university’s Hugh Aston Building, Vaughan Way, Leicester, on Wednesday 7 June from 9.15am until 4pm.

It will be of interest to anyone in the higher education sector and will consist of a mixture of whole-conference sessions as well as interactive workshops, with plenty of time for networking and sharing ideas.

DMU has been at the forefront of developing inclusive approaches to teaching and learning through its innovative Universal Design for Learning framework. It is the product of decades of research into how people learn and based on more than 800 different research studies.

This approach has received extensive praise from, among others, the Higher Education Funding Council for England and the Department for Education, the latter of which asked DMU to contribute to its ‘Inclusive teaching and learning in higher education as a route to excellence’ guidance document.

The conference will explore subjects such as institution-wide approaches to inclusion, managing student referrals, ensuring students have an input into programme content, how apps can help students, and giving people the opportunity to hear about DMU’s adoption of the principle of Universal Design for Learning into all teaching and learning approaches.

The day will be opened by Jo Cooke, DMU’s Associate Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director of Student and Academic Services, who will introduce the university’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Dominic Shellard and the keynote speaker Bettina Rigg.

Afghan Disability Rights Conference

WASHINGTON, DC:  The Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Washington, DC, will host the “Afghan Disability Rights Conference: From Policy to Programming” from 23-24 May 2017 at Georgetown University in Washington, DC.  This conference is being held in partnership with the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council and the United States International Council on Disabilities.

The conference aims to highlight disability issues and progress in the disability sector, focusing specifically on practical approaches for making inclusive education, inclusive public healthcare, and vocational training and employment opportunities realities for Afghan citizens living with disabilities.

The conference will include a keynote address, topical panel and roundtable discussions, and a networking session.  The goals of the conference are: 1) to shed light on disability issues, raise awareness and generate interest; 2) to consolidate support and generate ideas and plans for practical solutions to the topics discussed, and 3) provide an opportunity for networking and sharing knowledge.

For more information, please contact afg_pwdconf@usicd.org

Afghan Disability Rights Conference

WASHINGTON, DC:  The Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Washington, DC, will host the “Afghan Disability Rights Conference: From Policy to Programming” from 23-24 May 2017 at Georgetown University in Washington, DC.  This conference is being held in partnership with the U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council and the United States International Council on Disabilities.

The conference aims to highlight disability issues and progress in the disability sector, focusing specifically on practical approaches for making inclusive education, inclusive public healthcare, and vocational training and employment opportunities realities for Afghan citizens living with disabilities.

The conference will include a keynote address, topical panel and roundtable discussions, and a networking session.  The goals of the conference are: 1) to shed light on disability issues, raise awareness and generate interest; 2) to consolidate support and generate ideas and plans for practical solutions to the topics discussed, and 3) provide an opportunity for networking and sharing knowledge.

For more information, please contact afg_pwdconf@usicd.org