New Toolkit Helps Educators Include Students with Disabilities

Mon Apr 15 2019
Teacher assists a young student in her classroom in Armenia.

ICI has launched Inclusive Education Strategies: A Toolkit for Armenia. Developed by faculty and staff from the University of Minnesota—including ICI’s Renáta Tichá and Brian Abery—and Armenian State Pedagogical University (ASPU) in the Republic of Armenia, the toolkit will help educators include students with disabilities in regular classrooms and after-school activities. Significantly, the toolkit contains a textbook that is the first inclusive education resource in the Armenian language that was co-authored by Armenian academics and educators working in the field. The toolkit is a valuable resource for implementing inclusive education practices in post-Soviet countries like Armenia and countries on the path to a more inclusive society.

The toolkit includes the following:

Funded by UNICEF Armenia, the faculty and staff from the University of Minnesota and ASPU developed these inclusive education materials to be relevant to both U.S. and Armenian contexts. Each chapter in the textbook was co-authored by U.S. and Armenian authors to ensure the inclusive strategies could be implemented meaningfully in the Armenian education system. The film, Education for Every Child: Armenia's Path to Inclusion, highlights some of the milestones toward inclusive education in Armenia. All materials are or will be available in both English and Armenian.

Reflecting on the project that produced these inclusive education materials, Tichá said, “True international collaborations take much time and effort. This project and its products represent two years of work, spanning two countries, two cultures, and two languages. The result is a comprehensive toolkit of cross-cultural resources that support educators who will include students with disabilities in a meaningful learning process and environment.”