Local gov’t structures key to Inclusive Education implementation- Dr. Offei-Aboagye

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The Steering Committee Chairperson of Star Ghana Foundation, Dr. Esther Offei-Aboagye, has stressed the need for local government structures to strengthen compliance with the country’s Inclusive Education policy.

Speaking at a public lecture on the state of the implementation of the policy, Dr. Offei-Aboagye stated Ghana is bound to safeguard the rights of the vulnerable and marginalized such as Persons with Disability (PWDs) and children with special needs.

Citing the 1992 Constitution and a host of international conventions, including the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to make a case for inclusive education, Dr. Offei-Aboagye proposed a bottom-up approach which underscores inclusiveness, transparency, responsiveness and accountability.

Ghana crafted an inclusive education policy in 2016 as a mechanism to promote equal opportunities and ensure that no child is left behind with regard to access to education.

However, challenges including limited resource mobilization, and weak compliance structures and databases have impacted adversely on inclusive education implementation, especially in deprived communities.

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To promote compliance with inclusive education policy, Dr. Offei-Aboagye proposed effective mobilization of resources by local government authorities, improved awareness creation, compliance to accessibility guidelines, identification of best practices, policy ownership, responsive leadership are strengthened as well as collaborative efforts between the Ghana Education Service (GES) and the Ministry of Education (MOE).

Local gov’t structures key to Inclusive Education implementation- Dr. Offei-Aboagye

These measures, she observed, are crucial to attaining the SDG 4, which obliges countries to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

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On the allocation of PWDs share of the District Assemblies Common Fund, Dr. Offei- Aboagye tasked assemblies to go beyond the 3% for PWDs to enhance their economic wellbeing.

Meanwhile, Advocacy Advisor on Social Inclusion, Sight Savers International, Gertrude Oforiwa Fefoame, reiterated the importance of inclusive education policy in building an equitable society.

She rallied support for the institutionalization of best practices aimed at promoting the rights of PWDs and tasked government to ensure inclusive and equitable education for all.

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The public lecture was a Ghana National Education Campaign Coalition (GNECC) and Media General initiative with support from STAR Ghana Foundation.

The public lecture was under the theme, “Fostering ownership of the Inclusive Education Policy to Promote Compliance”

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