Accelerated funding to strengthen Global Partnership for Education’s response to COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting millions of learners at all levels across the world. Children with disabilities, in particular, are facing greater challenges following the move to online teaching programmes, resulting in digital exclusion and increased risk of being left behind due to the absence of appropriate assistive technology, access to the internet, and accessible learning materials and support.
In this context, UNESCO Asia and Pacific Regional Bureau for Education, with financial support from the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), is undertaking activities in the nine countries Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Timor-Leste through the interventions outlined below.
The project seeks to ensure that children with disabilities continue to learn during this critical time. To achieve this, the focus is on the production of learning materials in accessible formats for children with disabilities and developing capacities of teachers through online training to support children with disabilities.
- Development of accessible reading materials
Produce 900 accessible reading materials in various formats, such as digital braille, sign languages and audiobooks, in the nine GPE eligible countries in Asia (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan and Timor-Leste). These will be made readily available in an online platform. These accessible reading materials will be in the languages of each country and build on students’ knowledge and experiences to assist them in learning new concepts and skills. They can also be used as supplementary reading resources for primary students.
- Development of an online teacher training course to support children with disabilities
An online, multilingual regional teacher training course will be developed and piloted in five GPE Education Sector Program Implementation Grants (EPSIG)-eligible countries in Asia (Bhutan, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Timor-Leste) to enhance teacher capacity to adequately support children with disabilities during and after crisis, including COVID-19, in four areas:
- Stress management and psychosocial support
- Utilization of different assistive technologies
- Developing emergency response plan
- Transitioning back to school
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