DepEd Forms Council to Ensure Access to Education of Learners with Disability
In its serious bid to make education truly inclusive of all learners, the Department of Education will regularly meet with representatives of organizations from the disability sector to exchange ideas and map out plans on how learners who are differently-abled can have access to quality education.
DepEd, together with representatives from the disability sector, has organized the Advisory Council for the Education of Children and Youth with Disabilities (ACECYD) to give all children access to quality basic education.
Education Secretary Armin Luistro said the move is pursuant to Article 24 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Salamanca Statement on Inclusive Education and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Framework on Education for All.
“This is part of our serious push to move the disability agenda and facilitate the effective education of children and youth who are differently-abled,” Luistro explained.
The ACECYD, which will meet quarterly within the year with the Education Secretary, shall be composed of eight core members from different organizations. The core group shall be assisted by other disability sectors who act as observers along with the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAid), Christoffel Blinden Mission (CBM), Lillianne Foundation and the National Council on Disability Affairs.
The council is expected to work closely with the education chief for constructive exchange and action planning.
The core members are Dr. Irma C. Coronel of the Philippine Council of Cheshire Homes for the Disabled (PhilCOCHED), Capt. Oscar Taleon of the Alyansa ng May Kapansanang Pinoy and Philippine Blind Union, Mr. Richard D. Arceno of the Leonard Cheshire Disability Philippines Foundation, Mr. Manuel V. Agcaoili of the Philippine Foundation for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled, Mrs. Celia C Garcia of Parents Advocate for Visually-Impaired Children, Mr. Randy Weisser of the Resources for the Blind, Inc., Mrs. Carolyn C. Ui of LINK Center for the Deaf, Mrs. Felicite Jean Gonzales of the Philippine Association of Citizens with Development and Learning Disabilities and Mr. Raphael Domingo of Education Access for the Deaf.
ACECYD mainly focuses on supporting research studies and collate data, related reports and studies on inclusive and special education. It will also conduct strategic planning to come up with a shortlist of priorities that need immediate action.
“At the end of the day, our goal is to make education all-embracing and that means providing education more so for children and youth who have disabilities,” Luistro stressed.