One of the commitments agreed by the UN member states as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is to ensure that all people, including people with disabilities, have access to lifelong learning opportunities that will help them to acquire the needed competencies to participate fully in the society. According to the World Health Organization, people living with disabilities constitute the world’s largest minority – 1 billion people, 80% of whom live in developing countries. The World Bank reports that 20% of the world’s poorest people have some kind of disability, and UNESCO highlights that 90% of children with disabilities in developing countries do not attend any school.
Digital technology is increasingly applied as a tool to increase social inclusion and assist people with disabilities. Regarding access to education, good practices exist in applying digital technologies to support personal access to information and knowledge, teaching and learning, personal communication and interaction, and access to educational procedures. In particular, focusing on the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to support the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the UNESCO Model Policy for Inclusive ICT in Education for Persons with Disabilities (UNESCO Model Policy) provides a reference model to assist countries in formulating inclusive education frameworks adapted to each country’s specific conditions.
The UNESCO Model Policy is currently being applied for developing the Policy on Inclusive ICTs in Education for Uganda (Policy for Uganda). The aim of the project is to build a digital platform to accompany the UNESCO Model Policy and support the monitoring and evaluation of the recently designed Policy for Uganda. The project will conduct research on policy monitoring and evaluation and on accessible technologies; based on the research findings and case studies, develop initial requirements for the digital platform to support the UNESCO Model Policy; localize such requirements with stakeholders from Uganda to monitor the Policy for Uganda; develop courseware on monitoring and evaluation of policies on accessible digital technologies in education; and deliver such courseware in Uganda.