International Day of Persons with Disabilities
2 February 2022
While we were all gearing up for the end of the school year, the Directorate: Inclusive and Specialised Education Support hosted an expo from 01 to 03 December 2021 to create awareness about and highlight the realities of caring for and supporting vulnerable children.
The expo at the Western Cape Education Department’s Head Office in Cape Town promoted the importance of inclusion in life and the workplace. One of the goals of International Day of Persons with Disabilities is to spread awareness of invisible disabilities as well as the impact that COVID-19 has had on mental health.
Visible disabilities may include conditions where there is an indicator such as a wheelchair or the use of sign language while invisible disabilities include conditions that affect a person’s hearing, learning, communication, mental health, attention, behaviour or health conditions that could for example be HIV/AIDS or Covid-19 related. That does not make them any less potentially damaging to someone’s quality of life.
The Directorate: Inclusive and Specialised Education Support, with other role-players, provides support services and devices to eliminate or lessen the impact of barriers to accessing education.
Schools of Skills exhibited products made by learners and offered an opportunity for staff members to place orders for 2022. One of the schools, Khayelitsha Special School, specially designed and made a podium for the Head of Education, Brent Walters.
2021 marked the 20th anniversary of the release of Education White Paper 6, “Building an Inclusive Education and Training System”. The White Paper is to be reviewed to accelerate the implementation of Inclusive Education so that every child obtains access to quality education. On 22 and 23 November 2021, the Department of Basic Education and the Department of Women, Youth and People with Disabilities held an Inclusive Education Summit with the theme, “No child left behind”.