Debate on the education of handicapped children
The Law of 2003 on the relationship between state and private education excludes disability, and disabled children often have a structure that could accommodate them, i.e. EDIFF [service for differentiated education]. This is one of the reasons that had motivated the association Schrëtt fir Schrëtt to introduce a petition to the Chamber of Deputies. The public debate on the petition, that has attracted over 13,000 signatures, was held this morning, 13 April. The petitioners presented the Pető method which is the foundation of the of the Scrëtt fir Schrëtt's association's work. This involves a very special educational and rehabilitative system designed to maximize learning opportunities according to each child's potentials, with the aim of making the child as independent as possible. But Schrëtt fir Schrëtt has no legal basis and is dependent for the bulk of its funding from the state, based on an agreement. During the exchange with members of the relevant committees, the questions focused on the future of Schrëtt fir Schrëtt about possible integration into the IMC Institute [a multidisciplinary state special school] and on the Pető method itself, as well as training for staff.
Integration into the IMC Institute would appear difficult, this way of working being entirely different – besides, efforts in this direction have failed. The Education Minister Claude Meisch raised the issue, of the problem of making two systems that are very different, even antagonistic, work in the same Institute. Private-school status would certainly not solve the funding problem, on the contrary. If now the Association has to find about 20% of the funds by itself, this share could risk going up to 60%.After the members had deliberated in private, the Appeals Commission President Marco Schank concluded –'The plea for a legal basis forSchrëtt fir Schrëtt, received by politicians this morning during the open debate this morning, should have consequences'.The Committee on Education should grasp the first opportunity, at its meeting of 27 April.
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