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UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. A critique of Article 24 of the CRPD: Precedents, polarized paradigms, flawed contingencies

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Article 24 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) enshrouds inclusive schooling as a rights-based case premised on the placement of children and youth with disabilities in the general education system, highlights how inclusive schooling is to be implemented and guaranteed, and delineates the primary responsibilities of ratifying countries. This retrospective and descriptive paper touches on the genesis, drafting history, and content of the CRPD. The chief focus is on Article 24 and the articulated education goals and directives. The paper assesses the embedded conceptual and educational mismatches found in Article 24 that, of themselves, create obstacles to the implementation of the treaty’s education goals. We broadly conclude that regardless of the obligations incurred by ratification of the CRPD, the current emphasis on baseline rights to education, and the moral impetus provided by the international community, worldwide inclusive schooling is a fraught issue, under pressure on many dimensions.
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Keywords: Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; children with disabilities; disabilities; education policies; full inclusion; human rights; inclusive schooling; social model; special education; youth with disabilities

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2019

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  • World Studies in Education is a bi-annual, refereed, international journal offering a global overview of significant international and comparative education research. Its focus is on educational reforms and policy affecting institutions in the global economy.
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