|Knowledge, Curricula and Practice for the Educational Support Worker in Vietnam
|Two interlinked implementation processes are important to make the new national Inclusive Education service system fully functional:
(1): the establishment of two tiers of IE Resource Support Centres; 20 at provincial level and 64 at district level (Act 31 in law on PWDs 2010 and Joint Circular NO 58). Former special needs schools are currently being transformed into IE Support Centres. 17 Support Centres have been established (Nov. 2015) and qualitative research has been conducted (by P2-HNUE) illuminating the quality, functions and staff needed in such centres.
(2): a joint circular on a new profession “The Educational Support Worker for Persons with Disabilities” (ESW) will be ratified April 2016. ESWs will work in IE Support Centres and in 105 Special Centres supporting inclusion by providing guidance for schools, special schools, communities, families and CDWs. ESWs will provide early intervention, develop and implement means, knowledge, equipment and teaching aids that will support the process of inclusive education for marginalized children. In doing so, the ESWs will be targeting educational inequality directly and at the same time support overall transformation of the school system into inclusive education settings.
|Public education, health and social service infrastructure needs to be developed: it is lacking or non-existing in many rural areas in Vietnam affecting poor people and ethnic minority people the most.
The causal link between poverty and disability is strong in Vietnam and is clearly associated with lower educational attainment effectively trapping people in a vicious circles that are very difficult to escape with out help.
A pioneering national plan on “Inclusive Education Management” was issued by MoET (Ministry of Education). It describes a national service system aimed to introduce inclusive education in Vietnam.
This service system is currently being implemented and CLEMA proposes to develop the only key-element still missing in this service system; the first ever profession in Vietnam focused on inclusive education.
|However, there are no ESWs to operationalize the IE service system. Therefore, CLEMA aims to develop the profession of the ESW and introduce 8 pioneering study programmes.
The benefits of inclusive schooling are not confined to people with disabilities. Studies show that a critical argument for inclusion is, that it improves learning for all children, thereby linking inclusive education to educational quality as such.
Inclusive school settings are the best way to develop what teachers, administrators, students, university professors and concerned citizens worldwide believe to be quintessential values to ideally come from education; belonging, mastery, independence and generosity. “Inclusive schools are the most promising learning communities in which to achieve these goals, because they value the natural diversity of all students.”