Education Minister Milton Ribeiro stated that the government of President Jair Bolsonaro does not want to include children with disabilities in schools. This is the third time in just two weeks that Ribeiro has defended the segregation of children with disabilities, on another occasion the minister even said that they ‘hindered’ the others. The statement was given in an interview with radio Young pan on Monday 23.
“We don’t want inclusivism, they criticize my terminology, but it’s the same one I continue to use,” explained the minister while defending the government’s position on separating a room only for children with disabilities.
According to the minister, Brazil currently has 12% of children enrolled in public schools with some type of disability that ‘prevents them from having contact’ with others in the classroom. For the minister, this portion, in which they would be blind, deaf and autistic, is unable to keep up with what is being taught by teachers and would ‘impair the progress’ of colleagues.
“Not leaving aside the disabled, but also looking at the other 88% of the students who may eventually have too… When I used the word disturb I was unhappy, I said that, but using it carefully, I’ll do it again, if I used it the word disturb, one disturbs the other. In this sense of walking in education. The word hinder is not the best one, we are wrong, but one harms the other’s progress”, he highlighted.
According to Ribeiro, parents still have the final word between enrolling or not the child in a special room, but that, with ‘non-inclusiveness’, the government wants to offer ‘special care’ for children with disabilities.
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