In its Concluding Observations on Australia’s 5th and 6th reports, the UN CRC Committee referred to previous recommendations on the need for the Australian Government to ensure respect for the views of the child, the inadequacy of efforts to Close the Gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, the need to ensure that all children with disabilities have access to inclusive education, and to invest more in improving education at the early childhood, primary and secondary levels.
In this 19th webinar in our Child Rights series, we were joined by Sophie Wiggans (Systems Advocate at Queensland Advocacy for Inclusion) and Dr. Jonathon Sargeant (Senior Lecturer and Researcher at Australian Catholic University).
Sophie Wiggans outlined the barriers that many students with disability in Queensland experience when seeking access to an inclusive education, and concerns present in all states in Australia. She described QAI's advocacy using the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and touched on the relevance of using the CRC as a tool to protect children’s rights to education as defined by the UN CRPD and CRC committees.
Meanwhile, Dr. Jonathon Sargeant focused on the recommendation in the Concluding Observations to “… Enhance children’s meaningful and empowered participation in the family, in the community and in schools, paying particular attention to girls, children with disabilities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children”. He also commented on the shortcomings in current practices in the provision of education.