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Children with disabilities finally at schools?

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Photo: Pescanik

As children across Serbia enjoy their summer break, for some children the next school year can’t start soon enough. It may be their first chance to get an education. The Serbian government formally pledged in June that all children with disabilities will be able to go to school.

This is no small step. Thousands of children with disabilities in Serbia are not enrolled in school. Now we are told that they will finally have a chance at an education, and an inclusive one at that, to learn side by side with their peers with and without disabilities, as well as to enjoy school trips and after-school activities.

In a June 8 letter to Human Rights Watch, education minister Mladen Sarcevic promised to ensure “access, inclusion and participation of every child, student, and adult in quality and inclusive education.”

We are encouraged that the education ministry is announcing concrete measures to ensure that children and youth with disabilities no longer miss out on education.

The key is to make this a reality.

When I started conducting research on the topic in Serbia in November 2015, I met many children with disabilities who were not in school. In fact we found that up to 50 percent of children with disabilities who lived with their families were not........

© Peščanik