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A study on children with disabilities and their right to education: Republic of Rwanda

Jacqui Mattingly and Patrick Suubi

This study is one of a series of three case studies conducted in Madagascar, Comoros and Rwanda into the right to education of children with disabilities

Rwanda has made significant progress in increasing access to nine years' fee-free and compulsory education. Pre-primary is a growing sector and primary schooling boasts one of the highest enrolment rates in Africa. Data indicate that access to primary education has increased most significantly amongst the poorest and most rural sections of the population. In lower secondary education the provision of more classrooms has supported growing numbers of students.

The country has made a significant commitment to the right to education for children with disabilities, including ratifying the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in 2008 and establishing the National Council for People with Disabilities (NCPD) to act as an advocacy body and coordinate activities and monitor progress towards this commitment. Rwanda has laws and policies to allow for the inclusion of children with disabilities in education, which are reflected in the Education Sector Strategic Plan (ESSP) 2013/14–2017/18. One of the plan's priorities is increasing equitable access to education for students with special educational needs within mainstream and special schools.