The University of the Witwatersrand and the UNESCO Chair in Teacher Education for Diversity and Development, in collaboration with the Flemish Association for Development, Cooperation and Technical Assistance (VVOB), and the sponsorship of the European Union, are pleased to announce that they will be hosting the third symposium on teacher education for Inclusive Education from 10-12 July 2018.
Symposium theme: Enabling all teachers to be inclusive teachers
Sustainable Development Goal 4 commits all countries to universal access and equitable quality education for all. There is a renewed focus on effective learning and acquisition of relevant attitudes, knowledge, skills, and competences. As a signatory to the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), South Africa has an obligation to enable the right of all children to an inclusive education. South Africa’s White Paper Six offers the framework with which an inclusive education system will be established, building on the constitutional foundations of human rights, social justice, participation and social integration.
One of the necessary steps towards realising this right is to ensure that teachers are equipped to teach inclusively. This means challenging exclusionary practices that have become accepted and commonplace in schools and classrooms, and replacing these with pedagogies that are inclusive of learner diversity.
Teacher education is crucial in achieving an equitable and inclusive education system. Pre- and in-service teachers in ordinary and special schools need to be empowered to enable the disruptions necessary to reform the system. All teachers need to become inclusive teachers, so that all learners can be included.
In line with Article 24 of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), part of the process is expanding inclusive teaching practice to include the needs of learners with severe disabilities who may require additional, specific accommodations within an inclusive classroom.
Following the highly successful first and second National Symposia, this third symposium aims to build knowledge interchange among researchers, practitioners and policy makers. Through plenary panel discussions, posters, breakaway paper presentations, interactive roundtable discussions, and various networking opportunities, the symposium expects to build capacity for teacher education for inclusive teaching. The following themes will focus the deliberations:
- Agency for social justice and inclusion
- Valuing and understanding learner diversity
- Classroom practices that promote and support collaborative and individual learning
- Collaboration to enable inclusive teaching and learning
- Developing professionally as an inclusive teacher
The programme will begin with The Teacher Empowerment for Disability Inclusion (TEDI), a partnership between the University of Cape Town and CBM, who will present an analysis of teacher education needs and available teacher education programmes that promote the expansion of inclusive teaching practise to include meeting the needs of learners with severe disabilities who may require additional, specific accommodations within an inclusive classroom. This will include consideration of programmes offered by Centre of Excellence at selected Universities and informal programmes offered by NGO’s.
Registration for the Symposium is closed.
Emerald Conference Centre, Vanderbijlpark
Accommodation will be available at the Conference Centre, as well as a wide variety of Guesthouses in the area. A list of possible guesthouses can be found at http://www.sleeping-out/accommodation-near/Emerald-Casino