Te Kura Toi Tangata Faculty of Education, the University of Waikato, NZ
Galina’s doctoral research project focuses on development and implementation of inclusive education policies for children and young adults with disabilities in Uzbekistan. She earned her BA from Tashkent State Regional Pedagogical Institute (Uzbekistan) and MEd from the University of Utah (USA). Prior to her Doctoral study, she worked for international development projects aimed at establishing occupational training centres for young people with disabilities in rural areas. Galina’s previous research was on education inequity in developing countries and countries in transition.
The inclusion of children with disabilities in mainstream education has become an important agenda for many developing countries. The Uzbekistan government has also attempted to provide equal educational opportunities to this previously excluded group of children. Despite these efforts, however, many children with disabilities remain segregated. The total number of children with disabilities under 16 years old in the country is 97,000 (Uzbek Society of Disabled People, 2014). The majority of them either study at specialised educational institutions, or receive home-based education. Those who are placed at specialised institutions are often deprived of resources and services necessary to receive adequate education (UNICEF, 2013). While limited by the lack of reliable empirical data and research, this article aims to present the current situation in the development of inclusive education in Uzbekistan. It outlines the major legislative documents intended to support inclusive education and identifies some of the current obstacles to inclusive education practices.