Lagos State Inclusive Education Policy

Lagos state Ministry of education endorsed the Lagos State Inclusive Education Policy on 26th of May 2015. Below is the full text of the Policy

LAGOS STATE INCLUSIVE EDUCATION POLICY

1.0 Introduction

Inclusion is a belief system embraced by members of a learning community. It entails the responsibility of educating all pupils with multi-dimensional challenges and excluded children with the ultimate aim of assisting these diverse groups of pupils attain their desired goals, according to their individual needs and abilities.

An important dimension of inclusiveness is the physical location of pupils in the school environment and the classroom. This is expected to be conducive and enabling, such that it enhances pupils’ access to learning and accommodate their diverse needs. In essence, inclusive education is making education more accessible to all children of school age, irrespective of their socio-economic status, disabilities, race, ethnic or cultural background and gender.

This policy statement is targeted at putting in place an all inclusive education programme that will facilitate the expansion and improvement of a comprehensive education, especially for all out-of-school children. In a bid to attain the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of “education for all” (in respect of all children, particularly children with disabilities, the girl-child in difficult circumstances, those belonging to ethnic minorities and hard to reach communities) through access to free, qualitative and compulsory basic education. It is expected that the learning needs of all young people and adults will be achieved through equitable access to appropriate functional education and life-skill programmes. It is a step at improving all aspects of education geared towards the achievement of excellence and measurable learning outcomes in the areas of literacy, numeracy and numerous essential life skills.

Recognizing the need to have a reliable database of all out-of-school children in the State, it is pertinent to embark on a census, for accurate planning and projection. This policy will facilitate the conduct of a census of all out-of-school children with emphasis on the direct and remote causes which are inimical to their education. This is with a view to planning different strategies for different groups of children in the State.

This  policy will facilitate the achievement of UBE objectives which is in line with the MDGs which states that by year 2015, all children must complete nine years of basic education, in conjunction with “Education For All” (EFA),  Lagos State Special Peoples’ Law 2011, other Conventions, Declarations and Recommendations related to inclusive education.

2.0 Who are the out-of-school children in Lagos State?

The out-of-school children in Lagos State are those children of basic school age who are unable to attend school due to various circumstances such as divorce of the parents, parents’ professions, religion, parental economic status/poverty, cultural beliefs, disabilities, vulnerable children, teenage pregnancy, among others.

As a response to the yearning needs of all people with disabilities in Lagos State, the State House of Assembly has passed into law, the Lagos State Special People’s Bill, now known as “Lagos State Special People’s Law 2011”. This law addresses the fundamental rights of all children with disabilities as it concerns their education. It also made provision for inclusive education, with emphasis on creating access to education in all schools in the State, eradicating discrimination and stigmatization of people with special needs.

The existing inclusive education programme is more of integration/mainstreaming, as there are myriads of challenges to the programme. These are inadequate infrastructure, shortage of personnel, high ratio of pupil-to-teacher, and inadequate instructional materials.

3.0 Policy Environment

The Lagos State Inclusive Education Policy is meant to address the educational needs of all children and adults and it is expected to be operative in the 20 Local Government Areas and 37 Local Council Development Areas of Lagos State. This  policy puts into consideration the provisions of the National Policy on Education,  various international conventions, declarations, and the array of existing recommendations on inclusive education, the Lagos State Special People’s Law (2011), the Lagos State Education Policy, the National Teachers’ Policy, the National School Health Policy and the Gender Basic Education Policy.

4.0 Lagos State Inclusive Education Policy Goal

The main goal of Lagos State Educational System is the pursuit of excellence in all educational provisions, with emphasis on all children of school age and adults having access to universal basic education.

4.1 Policy Objectives

The policy objectives are to:

  • Align the State education system with the directives of the National Policy on Education.
  • Ensure that all out-of-school children of school age are brought to school for complete basic education.
  • Ensure regular training and re-training of personnel as well as the provision of adequate instructional materials to improve on the quality of teaching and learning in schools.
  • Promote adaptable curriculum and school infrastructure that meet the needs of all children without discrimination so as to be productive members of the society.
  • Encourage parents and communities to participate effectively as important stakeholders in the management of schools.

5.0 Strategies for achieving the inclusive education policy objectives

The following are the identified strategies to achieve the goals and objectives of this policy:

5.1 Creation of awareness on inclusive education

Our analysis has revealed that carefully planned awareness and sensitization activities should be, embarked upon and sustained to encourage parents to enroll their wards in schools.

The following specific activities will be implemented to change attitude and behaviour.

  • Sensitization and awareness   on Inclusive Education (IE) to community leaders, religious organizations, and parents.
  • Develop key messages for handbills, posters and place jingles on radio, television and print media
  • Public enlightenments and campaign rallies in places with Out-of School Children e.g. motor parks, markets and sundry places.
  • Sensitize parents and teachers on the need to learn sign language, and other means of managing children living with disabilities

5.2 Ensure that all children are enrolled retained and transit to higher schools

Steps are to be taken to improve students’ enrolment, retain students in schools and transit to higher educational school level through the following activities:

  • Conduct Out-of- school baseline survey and monitor progress periodically.
  • Conduct Annual School Census to monitor attendance and retention.
  • Collect data on children that drop-out and those at risk of not transiting to higher classes and follow them up.
  • Establish or strengthen existing children’s clubs, to conduct survey to identify children who are not in school, investigate why they are not in school, counsel parents on the importance of education.
  • Provide guidance and counseling services for school children and parents.
  • Encourage partnership between the parents, professionals, civil society organizations, corporate bodies to support school activities.

5.3 Creating access and safety in all public schools

  • Modification of all school structures to create accessibility for children with disabilities (provision of ramps where necessary).
  • Provision of adequate security in all schools in the State.
  • Use of community-based security network.
  • Involvement of parent forum/SBMC in the provision of security in schools.
  • Enforcement of the Lagos State Special People’s Law 2011.
  • Encourage all registered private schools to accept all school-age-children that visit them for enrolment without any form of discrimination.
  • Provision of accessible recreational facilities.
  • Establishment of more primary and secondary schools particularly in areas that are densely populated.
  • Training on disaster risk reduction and providing early warning systems in all schools.
  • Provision of First Aid kits in all schools.
  • Provision of potable water in all schools in the state.
  • Provision of regular power supply in all schools.
  • Provision of free mid-day meal for the children.

5.4 Improved teaching /learning conditions:

  • Continuous training of teachers (regular and special needs education teachers)
  • Payment of monthly special teachers’ and care-givers’ allowance
  • Regular promotion of teachers and supporting staff members.
  • Employment of more teachers to tackle shortage of teaching staff in schools
  • Employment of caregivers in schools
  • Employment of other service providers for special needs children education (braillists, sign language interpreters etc)
  • Making learning environment friendly.
  • Provision of age-appropriate and adequate instructional materials in all schools.
  • Provision of vocational education/training in all schools for vocational skills development.
  • Provision of library materials for knowledge updating purposes.
  • Review of school curriculum to accommodate other groups in the school in a flexible manner.
  • Creating teacher/pupil ratio that is result oriented.
  • Recruitment of relevant personnel, e.g. audiologist, social workers, psychologists, physiotherapists, counselors, caregivers, etc.
  • Incorporate the teaching of core aspect of special education from first to final year in colleges of education in the state.
  • Creation of Resource Centers in all schools.

5.5 Making teaching interesting and recognizing the ability and needs of all children.

In Lagos State, the intention is to work towards making teaching and learning interesting and fun, by overcoming resource barriers through the following activities:

  • Use problem-based on-the-job approach to train and retrain teachers to teach diverse learners and make schools more effective.
  • Provide access to relevant information on how to implement inclusive education.
  • Facilitate better teaching and learning to adapt to local language and teaching materials in the school environment. Use local language to disseminate information and build on existing good practices.
  • Encourage teachers in using collaborative problem-solving methods, including children who have impairments, or who have been identified as having “special needs”.
  • Provide appropriate specialized facilities to address identified learning difficulties.
  • Advocate the establishment of functional guidance and counseling units in schools.
  • Earmark feasible extra time for testing and examining children living with learning difficulties.
  • Facilitate the provision of appropriate musical and laboratory facilities/materials.
  • Provision of basic instructional materials based on the challenge of each child, e.g. Braille materials for the visually impaired person, sign language materials for hearing impaired person etc.

5.6 Making school environment safe.

Lagos State would ensure that all children feel safe, free and happy to come to school through the following activities:

  • Creating appropriate, safe and learner friendly environment.
  • Fencing of school compound.
  • Preventing all forms of abuse in schools.
  • Provision of appropriate sporting facilities.
  • Mapping of schools that are vulnerable to disasters including natural and climate disasters.
  • Make adequate arrangement and or infrastructure upgrade to eliminate flooding and resilient schools infrastructure.

5.7 Making special schools serve as resource centres.

The existing special schools will be transformed into outreach and resource centres for inclusive education in the State through the following activities:

  • Making special schools more inclusive by introducing ‘twinning’ between regular and special needs children to attract different categories of children.
  • Ensure provision of resource materials (audiometers, speech/auditory trainers Braille equipment and other assistive technology etc) to equip special schools as resource centres.
  • Establishment of functional SBMC community involvement and partnership between social workers, parents and children themselves, to make meaningful contribution to inclusive education and help to promote inclusion in the State.
  • Existing inclusive units will be used as pilot schools for inclusive education.

 

 

 

6.0 Stakeholder’s roles and responsibilities

The effective implementation of inclusive education in the State calls for collaborative efforts of all stakeholders to play specific roles as stated below:

 

6.1 Ministry of Education

  • Coordination of inclusive education programmes in the State.
  • Update research data on inclusive education in the State.
  • Work with other Ministries in the State for effective implementation of inclusive education practices.
  • Inspection, monitoring/supervision of inclusive practices in the State.
  • Training and retraining of teaching staff for effective education services.
  • Adequate funding of inclusive education programme in the State.
  • Provision of guidance and counseling services to schools.
  • Identification and assessment of children with special need in the State.
  • Placement of special children into special schools based on their challenges
  • Referral services to appropriate places such as vocational centres, hospitals and rehabilitation centres.
  • Organizing career talks/excursion for students and pupils in Lagos State
  • Administration of Aptitude test for all JSSIII students in Lagos State
  • Celebration of important annual festive programmes such as International Day for person with Disabilities; 3rd December, at the State level, Children’s Day; 27th , May, etc
  • Quality control of schools, both public and private.
  • Provision of Adult Education programme in the State.
  • Provision of scholarship/bursary award to indigene and outstanding students.
  • Provision of library facilities in schools
  • Placement of students into SS1 class of their anticipated career choices; Science, Arts, Commerce
  • Provision of instructional materials such as projector, television, Braille machine, hearing aids, mobility cane, audiometer etc
  • Coordination of co-curricular activities in schools
  • Coordination of inter/intra State transfer for students
  • Ensure that the state owned tertiary institutions administer courses or programmes on special education.

6.2 Lagos State Universal Basic Education Board (LSUBEB)

  • Employment of teaching staff
  • Employment of support staff
  • Deployment/transfer of staff
  • Promotion of staff
  • Payment of salary and allowances
  • Discipline of staff
  • Training and retraining of all teaching /non-teaching staff
  • Conduct and monitoring of unified examinations
  • Monitoring of teaching and learning activities in all primary schools in the State
  • Recommendation and supply of teaching and learning materials to all basic schools in the State.
  • Registration of pupils into ECCDE/primary one
  • Transfer of pupils into primary two to five
  • Establishment of new ECCDE centres/primary schools
  • Splitting of over-populated primary schools
  • Placement of pupils into junior secondary schools
  • Transfer of students into junior secondary schools
  • Collection of data for proper planning
  • Construction, rehabilitation and renovation of infrastructural facilities in schools
  • Provision of infrastructural facilities in schools (furniture, classrooms, etc)
  • Establishing ECCDE centres in schools.
  • Adaptation of ECCDE/primary pupil’s curriculum.
  • Overseeing the implementation of the ECCDE Curriculum.
  • Monitoring the deployment and training of care givers.
  • Monitoring early childhood learning.
  • Monitoring adult and nomadic education
  • Monitoring of correctional centres.
  • Supervision and monitoring of activities carried out by SUBEB in schools.
  • Overseeing the implementation of the Basic education curriculum, including training in interpretation and application.
  • Recommending textbooks and instructional materials;
  • Distributing textbooks and instructional materials to LGEAs for distribution to schools, and monitoring distribution.
  • Coordinating and supervising registration and transfer of pupils.
  • Coordinating and supervising model primary schools.
  • Overseeing continuous assessment processes.
  • Coordinating the administration of examinations.
  • Coordination of co-curricular activities.
  • Provision of library facilities in schools.
  • Provision of instructional materials and infrastructures such as classroom and teaching aids.
  • Promoting science education.
  • Monitoring of activities in schools.
  • Coordination of establishment and splitting of schools.
  • Coordinating of JCCE/NCE meetings.

6.3 Local Government Education Authorities

  • Ensure effective supervision of teaching and non-teaching staff in the schools.
  • Serve as liaison office between SUBEB and primary schools in the State.
  • Information dissemination on inclusive education practices among schools.
  • Recruitment of non-teaching staff to schools in the State.
  • Promotion of all non-teaching staff.
  • Deployment/transfer of all non-teaching staff.
  • Supervision of teaching activities in all primary schools in the State.
  • Support data collection on school based issues and out of school.

6.4 School Based Management Committee (SBMC)

  • Creating awareness on inclusive education within the community.
  • Counseling parents and children on the importance of inclusive education and bringing out of school children to school.
  • Provision of security to school facilities and children.
  • Support provision of infrastructural facilities.
  • Support implementation of school development plan.
  • Assist in data collection by providing information.
  • Advocating for child’s education (protection, finding support group, report violations, ask for productive parent-teacher-student conference, knowing the school environment).
  • Encourage parents to show love to their children (spending time together, playing game together, taking walks together etc).

7.0 Civil Society Organizations/Non Governmental Organisations

Raise awareness on inclusive education.

  • Influence government to implement child right and protection law and other relevant laws.
  • Support all children with school materials.
  • Support mentoring and capacity building of stakeholders.
  • Working with communities to ensure voice and accountability in the implementation of the policy.
  • Lead advocacy and awareness for inclusive education.
  • Engage in collaborative out-of-school census, and monitoring and evaluation of this policy.
  • Raise awareness of all stakeholders on rights-based approach in achieving inclusive education in Lagos state
  • Mobilize community engagement in inclusive education.
  • Ensure that gender is mainstreamed in the implementation of inclusive education policy.
  • Private participation to compliment Government efforts in areas of training, advocacy, provision of structures and infrastructures and instructional materials in schools.

7.1 School Support Services (Junior Secondary School)

  • Overseeing the implementation of the basic education curriculum, including training, interpretation and application.
  • Recommending textbooks and instructional materials.
  • Distributing textbooks and instructional materials to LGEAs for distribution to schools, and monitoring distribution.
  • Coordinating and supervising registration and transfer of students.
  • Overseeing continuous assessment processes.
  • Coordinating the administration of examinations.
  • Promoting science education.
  • Monitoring of activities in schools.
  • Coordination of establishment and splitting of schools.

7.2 Education Districts (I-VI) (for Secondary Schools)

  • Information dissemination through the schools on out-of-school children to the parents, communities etc.
  • Monitoring of inclusive education activities in schools through the school inspectors.
  • Recruitment of qualified teachers.
  • Request for the provision of infrastructural facilities that is inclusive education friendly.
  • Make useful contributions in the process of curriculum review.
  • Collection and keeping of relevant data on out-of-school children.
  • Posting of guidance counselors to all schools.
  • Provision of teaching aids and motivational books/materials.

7.3 Lagos State Education Resource Centre

  • Sensitization of parents and public through posters and handbills.
  • Technical advice and assistance on facilities and infrastructure.
  • Research and development of up-to-date infrastructure.
  • Recommendations on curriculum review/updating.
  • Production of relevant instructional materials for inclusive education.
  • Training of teaching and non-teaching staff on inclusive education.

7.4 Ministry of Information

  • Public enlightenment on inclusive education in State media
  • Liaise with Ministry of Education and all relevant stakeholders on awareness creation on inclusive education during public programmes, global/international days and festive occasions.
  • Sensitization of the public on the need for attitudinal change.
  • Broadcast information efficiently and effectively among various media of communication in Lagos State.
  • Dissemination of data and information on inclusive education.
  • Report abuses or violations of rights in schools.

7.5 Ministry of Health

  • Provision of adequate medical facilities to all schools.
  • Provision of free health services to all school children in the State.
  • Prompt intervention to children’s health needs.
  • Screening of school food vendors and other members of staff and issuance of certificate of fitness to all.
  • Regular training and supervision of school food vendors.
  • Annual medical screening for all teaching and non-teaching staff in all schools in Lagos State.
  • Enlightenment on the need for balance diet for school children.
  • Immunization of school children during the immunization periods.

7.6 Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation

  • To alleviate poverty through provision of vocational training programmes in public schools so as to encourage skill acquisition among school age children.
  • To take care of out-of-school teenagers by encouraging them to go to school.
  • To take care of the vulnerable children whose parents may not be able to take properly care for.
  • To raise awareness and ensure full implementation of the Child Rights Law and Domestic Violence law in Lagos State.

7.7 Ministry of Justice

  • To provide protection and enforce the fundamental rights of school age children of Lagos State.
  • To ensure the full enforcement of Lagos State Child Right Law, Lagos State Special People’s Law and Lagos State Domestic Violence Law

7.8 Ministry of Youth, Sports and Social Development

  •  To interface with the Ministry of Education to continue to lay a solid foundation for youths through functional education curriculum with a strong moral and patriotic content.
  • To create an enabling environment that promotes youth and social development services that give succor to the vulnerable children.
  • To use sport as tool for social engagement, weapon against poverty, strategy against juvenile delinquency.
  • To use sport as linkage of schools and launch pad for taking sport as a career.

7.9 Ministry of Environment

  • To foster a clean, healthy, sustainable school environment for the well being of the pupils/students through the application of best practices in environmental management.
  • Ensure that public environment is free of any barrier to children movement.
  • Ensure that all schools have enabling learning environment.
  • To add aesthetic beauty to school environment.
  • Provision of proper drainage system to prevent flooding and disaster.
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