Despite dramatic improvements in access to school over the past decades, many children are still excluded from learning in safe, healthy and non-discriminatory environments. They include children with disabilities, and refugee and internally displaced children.
Children with disabilities are less likely to start school and if they do, they are unlikely to transition to secondary school. Their access to school is often limited by a lack of understanding about their needs, and a lack of trained teachers, classroom support, learning resources and facilities.
Children with disabilities are also at significantly increased risk of violence compared to children without disabilities.
Denying children with disabilities their right to education has a lifelong impact on learning, achievement, and employment opportunities, hence hindering their potential economic, social and human development.
Inclusion means transforming schools so that they can respond to the diverse needs of all children – ensuring that they are not just present in the classroom but also safe, participating and learning.
Making schools safe, healthy and inclusive is a priority area of GPE 2025, the partnership’s strategic plan. GPE promotes the mainstreaming of equity and inclusion in all policies and plans to ensure that all children enjoy their basic human rights without discrimination.
Increased equity, gender equality and inclusion in education are fundamental to GPE’s mission.
GPE in action
Research and data: GPE has supported research and projects on disability, school health (including screening for disability and provision of eyeglasses), school-related gender-based violence, and refugee children. Additionally, GPE supports national governments to strengthen education data systems, including efforts to disaggregate data by disability.
Planning, policy dialogue and financing: In partner countries, GPE promotes equity through its support for inclusive planning processes and implementation of inclusive education sector plans.
GPE supports countries to put in place factors such as a rights-based approach and data on disability, that will enable transformation towards a more inclusive education system and ensures that disability inclusion is considered in all activities we fund.
Advocacy: GPE advocates for inclusive education at the global, regional and national levels, supports sharing research and data, and facilitates peer learning on inclusive education.
Supporting countries to implement equity and inclusion activities: Partner countries use GPE grants to train teachers in inclusive education and provide access to equipment and learning materials for children with disabilities such as braille machines, eyeglasses and hearing aids.
Equity and inclusion webinars
This series of webinars titled Sharing innovations on making all children count focused on collecting and using data on marginalized groups and education. It covered:
- identification of disability and measurement of inclusive learning environments
- the role of community and citizen-led initiatives
- the use and limitations of new technologies in gathering better data.
A key objective is to convene partners working on these issues and to foster collaboration to hone and apply new ideas.
- Data driven approaches to improving learning in emergency, conflict and crisis settings June 2020
- Using evidence to leave no child behind: What next for the Out-of-School Children Initiative? April 2020
- Gender and disability - Findings from the Girls’ Education Challenge – February 2020
- Using monitoring data to improve girls’ school participation – January 2020
- Inclusion of children with disabilities in education - Learning from new household survey tools – December 2019
- Improving EMIS data on inclusive education to effectively monitor SDG 4 – October 2019