A two-day sensitization workshop to sensitize various stakeholders working with people with disabilities on the use of ICTS is being held in Kampala.
The workshop is being organized by the National Information Technology Authority Uganda (NITA-U), an agency under the Ministry of ICT & National Guidance with the support from The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
Unesco and Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies (G3ict) have jointly adopted a policy to facilitate the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, or UNCRPD.
The main objective of the joint initiative is to develop a model policy document to be used as a template to assist the Unesco Member States in promoting the effective use of inclusive ICTs in education for learners with disabilities. The policy also applies to any special needs learner.
The birth of the idea was partly informed by the 2011 World Report on Disability which estimated that there are between 93 and 150 million school-aged children with disabilities globally and many of these learners are excluded from educational opportunities and do not complete primary education.
In Uganda, according to a 2014 survey at least 13% of the population has a disability. In Uganda, the teaching of ICTs was made compulsory in secondary schools in 2012 and schools are still facing multiple challenges in implementing it, which implies such workshops are very necessary.
According to a Nita statement, the workshop, taking place at the information Access center, Ministry of ICT and National guidance offices, targets stakeholders like disabled persons organizations, Civil Society Organizations and technical programme officers of relevant Ministries, Departments and Authorities, Administrators of Education institutions, regulators like the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) and the National Curriculum Development Centre (NCDC).
The objective of the workshop is to equip participants with knowledge and skills about inclusive ICTs, and their potential to support the socio-economic inclusion of persons with disabilities and the roles different stakeholders can play in bridging the information access gap, says the statement.
“This workshop will build on two others that were conducted by NITA-U in April with the support of UNESCO to create awareness on the electronic policy monitoring tool developed to track progress towards implementation of policies on Assistive Technologies to ensure Inclusive Education and Access to Information in Uganda,” ends the statement.
The workshop started on Wednesday and it will end today, Thursday.