No matter what argument may be built to the contrary, we have a moral imperative to ensure every child has a right to an appropriate education of high quality

As the publication of our international education guidelines for people with Down syndrome gets closer we are interested to read the 2020 Global Education Monitoring (GEM) report launched earlier this week by UNESCO.

The report assesses progress towards Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4) on education and its ten targets, as well as other related education targets in the SDG agenda. The report addresses inclusion in education, drawing attention to all those excluded from education, because of background or ability. The report also explores the challenges holding us back from achieving this vision and demonstrates concrete policy examples from countries managing to tackle them with success.

Key messages for children with Down syndrome

  • Recent data suggest that children with disabilities constitute 15% of the out-of-school population. They face complex barriers. Those with a sensory, physical or intellectual disability are 2.5 times more likely to have never been in school as their peers without disabilities.
  • Segregation is still prevalent - laws in 25% of countries (but over 40% in Asia and in Latin America and the Caribbean) make provisions for education in separate settings, 10% for integration and 17% for inclusion, the remainder opting for combinations of segregation and mainstreaming.
  • Some 25% of teachers in 48 education systems report a high need for professional development on teaching students with special needs.

What DSi are doing

We are developing international education guidelines for people with Down syndrome to improve the availability and quality of education around the world and to contribute to the realisation of their right to an inclusive education and lifelong learning as outlined in Article 24 of the United Nation’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

Read more about our education guidelines project:

Education guidelines

Read UNESCO's 2020 GEM report in full or summary:

2020 GEM report