Disability training: it is a confrontation between the Ministry and the unions (who do not want compulsory courses)

With regard to the compulsory training of teachers working in reception classes for students with disabilities, there is now an open conflict between the Ministry and the unions and it is very difficult for the parties to reconcile in a short time.

The problem comes from one provision contained in Article 1, paragraph 961, of the Budget Act 2021: “The fund referred to in Article 1, paragraph 125, of Law No. 107, increased by 10 million euros for the year 2021 for the implementation of mandatory training interventions for teachers engaged “This training is aimed at the school inclusion of the student with a disability and at guaranteeing the principle of co-ownership by taking charge of the student himself.”
“By decree of the Minister of Education, which shall be adopted within thirty days from the date of entry into force of this law: the norm continues – The modalities of execution are established, which provide for the prohibition of exemption from teaching, the criteria for assignment, the conditions for reserving training only for staff who do not have the degree of support, the determination of the units in any case not less than 25 hours of global commitment, the criteria and methods for monitoring the training activities referred to in this section “.

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These days, with a great delay with respect to the thirty days required by law the ministry has announced to social workers that the implementing decree is ready but the unions have already expressed their opposition.
In addition to the Guild, the Flc-Cgil said he totally disagreed and requests “suspension of the issuance of the decree or, in the alternative, revise the principle of obligation, the quantification of hours, the prohibition of exemption from the service, informing of the matters in the contractual and collective framework for the aspects competence, also in order to establish a criterion of coherence between the provisions in question and the commitments assumed by the Government with the signing of the recent Agreements “.

The first news is already circulating about how the 25 hours will be organized: there is talk of 17 hours of “lessons” on disability issues and 8 hours of “laboratory” activities.
However, not everyone likes the model: during the work of the National Disability Observatory, of which the unions are not part, several associations and the same Anci (Italian municipalities) have asked that the path also include the possibility to form groups of teachers. of the same class or center, in relation to the specific cases followed, thus allowing to address the fundamental aspects of individualized teaching, group teaching, teaching technologies and formative assessment, in relation to the different types of disabilities really present in the middle.
But in the end it seems that we will follow a more “traditional” approach.

According to many, the prospect of making training compulsory for everyone is important because it means reiterating that the inclusion project affects the entire teaching staff and not just the support teacher.

“I think the whole situation is very serious” comments Raffaele Iosa, a former school inspector, has been in charge of the National Inclusion Observatory for many yearswhich adds: “What is happening seems to me to be the fact that the disability is experiencing an increasingly serious isolation drift. This 25-hour story will increase the degradation, not by the number of hours, content and form, but by the symbolic sense of lack of interest. In the document of a union it is even written that the 25 hours are used to train curricular teachers in support in order to reduce the number of support positions over time. It seems to me a meaningless statement and totally contrary to the most basic pedagogical principles “.

In any case, the truth is that today an important aspect remains completely unresolved: in many cases students with disabilities attend classes in which none of the teachers on the team has ever carried out specific training activities in the field of disability and inclusion and this situation. -beyond the goodwill of the teachers involved- it certainly does not favor the inclusion processes.

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