The Sustainable Development of Persons With Disabilities in Developing Countries Through Open and Distance Education

The Sustainable Development of Persons With Disabilities in Developing Countries Through Open and Distance Education

Sanjay Kant Prasad (Indira Gandhi National Open University, India)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2624-7.ch006
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Abstract

The United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities has provided a strong impetus to the full and effective involvement of persons with disabilities in society and development with equal access to opportunities to contribute to an equal footing with others in social and economic progress. . However, developing nations are yet to achieve the goal of full participation and equalization of opportunities for sustainable development of persons with disabilities. The special education system or inclusive education being a part of education system, needs to examine the feasibility of open and distance learning to provide opportunity to maximum number of persons with disabilities irrespective of their physical, sensory and psychological diversity, to make them a part of mainstream society. The Guidelines on Open and Distance developed for Persons with Disabilities, published by UNESCO will also be very effective in general and developing countries in particular.
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Sustainable Social Development

The social development includes the acceptance of persons with disabilities; recognise their needs and perceive their abilities. These are vital for the developing nations, since strong social stigma is attached with the disability, which can only be removed by including the persons with disabilities in mainstream society and protecting them for becoming victim of social exclusion and marginalization. The article 3 of UNCRPD has stated that “the principles of present convention shall be (a) Respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one’s own choices and independence of persons; (b) Non-discrimination; (c) Full and effective participation and inclusion in society; (d) Respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity; (e) Equality of opportunity; (f) Accessibility, (g) Equality between men and women; (h) Respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities. This sustainable social development can be achieved by giving them opportunity to have equal participation in getting education in an appropriate and accessible environment. The removal of attitudinal barrier will helps a lot for sustainable development of persons with disabilities. The quality of life will also improve, if societies perceive them as a productive member of the society with some diverse need.

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