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Inclusive education cultivates sense of belonging, says Education Minister

James Kon

Inclusive education programmes that have brought students of all abilities together has helped create understanding, shaped attitudes, and cultivated positive learning environments.

These attributes are critical for students to develop a sense of belonging and build a cohesive and successful community to ensure students become better prepared for life in the community as children now and as adults later.

Minister of Education Datin Seri Setia Dr Hajah Romaizah binti Haji Mohd Salleh highlighted the importance of inclusive education at the 3rd Education Specialists Seminar 2023 on Thursday themed ‘Contemporary Specialisation in Educational Practices towards Education Excellence’.

The minister also said, “The inclusion of children with disabilities in the classroom will likely be successful with the cooperation and collective effort of those within as well as beyond the wall of our schools. Our teachers cannot do this alone. Schools, parents and government agencies are some of the key stakeholders here.

“All must work together to rethink and transform education to ensure progress towards equity.”

The Ministry of Education’s (MoE) efforts in providing inclusive education for all learners, have led to the establishment of specialised schools such as the Centre of Excellence and Model Inclusive Schools”, she said

Minister of Education Datin Seri Setia Dr Hajah Romaizah binti Haji Mohd Salleh. PHOTO: JAMES KON

The minister said this year’s seminar’s sub-theme ‘Inclusiveness in developing holistic education towards education excellence’, highlights “the MoE’s continuous strategic measures to ensure equal access to all levels of education and to promote inclusive and equitable lifelong learning opportunities.”

Head of Specialist Unit Hajah Rosinah binti Haji Sabli said, “The seminar reflects the urgent need for educators and education specialists to come together and learn how to create inclusive learning environments catering to diverse needs of all students.

“Therefore, we believe that by exploring different ways of teaching and adapting our curriculums, we can ensure that students receive the support they need to succeed academically, regardless of their backgrounds and abilities.

“The minister of education also highlighted the importance of alignments and collective efforts from all stakeholders involved such as government entities and the nation in developing an inclusive holistic education. “

She added, “Let us be the catalysts of change, driving inclusiveness in our classrooms, schools and educational system. Remember, the work we do as educators is not confined to the boundaries of this seminar.

“It is an ongoing journey, and our commitment to inclusive education extends far beyond these walls. Together, we have the power to make a lasting impact on the lives of countless learners, empowering them to realise their full potential and contribute meaningfully to society.”