New General Comment on Inclusive Education
The UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has issued a General Comment on the right to inclusive education. It states that inclusive education is central to achieving high quality education for all learners, including disabled people, and for the development of inclusive, peaceful and fair societies. It says that millions of disabled people are denied an education, and for many more, education is available only in settings where they are isolated from their peers.
The Chair of the UN Committee, Maria Soledad Cisternas Reyes, said ‘Inclusive education is important not only for persons with disabilities but the societies they live in, as it helps to combat discrimination, and to promote diversity and participation.’
The General Comment provides guidance for the 166 States that have ratified the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on meeting their obligations under Article 24, which says “States Parties shall ensure an inclusive education system at all levels and life-long learning.”
The UK will be examined on its implementation of the CRPD this summer.
In June 2016, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child raised concern in its Concluding Observations on the UK that many disabled children are still placed in “special schools” or “special units” in mainstream schools and that many school buildings were still not accessible to disabled children.
Download the General Comment