Pre-Conference Workshop on Inclusive Education

The Pre-Conference Workshop on Inclusive Education is taking place on Monday, 11th of May 2015 from 12:30 to 16:00.

It is organized by UNESCO and EBE-EUSMOSI and focuses inclusive education in schools and lifelong learning.

The title is: Interacting with the draft UNESCO Guidelines on the inclusion of students with disabilities in Open and Distance Learning (ODL) using Open Solutions

This session will allow particpants to interact with the UNESCO Draft Guidelines on the inclusion of students with disabilities in open and distance learning using open solutions. The document examines how open solutions (Open Educational Resources – OER; Free and Open Source Software – FOSS; Open Data and Open Access to scholarly data – OA, Information accessibility – IA) can ensure that technological developments, new pedagogical approaches, software and course content provided in diverse formats, including open and distributed via open communication channels can be best harnessed to support persons wtih disabilities. The major outcome of the work is to make sure a systematic inclusion of accessibility aspects via open solutions in the open and distance learning using Open Solutions.

This session will include three presentations: An overview of the Guidelines Document by UNESCO (by Zeynep Varoglo, UNESCO); a review of the importance of the document for implementing Open solutions from the prespective of an organization working in the field of disability (by Danguole Rutkauskiene, Kaunas University of Technology) and an overview of the EBE-EUSMOSI initiative as an example for the Guidelines implementation (by Annalisa Morganti, University of Perugia).

After these presentations, the participants will work in groups to debate on the usefulness of the document, and the practicality of the implementation of such a document in an institutional setting; in the case of the Evidence Based Education: European Strategic Model for School Inclusion (EBE-EUSMOSI) initiative, the focus is on school environment to assess and evatuale „what works“ for inclusion (efficacy research dimension). One of the main goals of this project is to make the project outcomes available to all through the use of the open solutions.

A key question to be examined in the group sessions is: how do Open Solutions presented in this document build the capacity of those who use Knowledge and those that produce Knowledge? By focusion on inclusion, the EBE-EUSMOSI project foresees improving and enaching of the ability and capacity of teacher expanding inclusion, in and outside of schools. In the EBE-EUSMOSI project, the widespread principle of inclusion are expected to be applied in context and to become actions and practices. This actions and practices shall be made available through the open solution.

The groups will then report on their findings, and a list of the discussion findings will be produced as an outcome of the meeting. The findings will be integrated into the document, as appropriate. It is foreseen that this document will be discussed as part of the Outcomes of the 1st International Conference ‘From Exclusion to Inclusion: The Role of Information and Communication Technologies for Persons with Disabilities’ (New Delhi, November 2014) at the 198th session of the UNESCO Executive Board and the 38th Session of the UNESCO General Conference in the fall of 2015.