April 19, 2016
In March 2016, the Bhutan Foundation was excited to welcome Perkins International to Bhutan to carry out a needs assessment of the Bhutan Foundation’s Special Education Program, which is now in its eighth year. The Special Education Program has come a long way since we first started it in 2009 in close partnership with the Ministry of Education, Early Childhood Care and Special Education Needs Division, and various other stakeholders working in the disability arena in Bhutan. Together, we have made much progress over the last eight years, including the establishment of a Division for Special Education Needs and Early Childhood Development and Care under the Ministry of Education, a draft of the Special Education Needs Policy under the National Education Policy put forth to the cabinet for endorsement, over 450 teachers trained in special education throughout the country, and 12 public schools now able to teach children with disabilities throughout the country. However, there is still a need for improvement in the quality of education provided to the children with disabilities, more training for the Bhutanese teachers, and access to resources. After evaluating the needs assessment of the program, the Bhutan Foundation will work in partnership with Perkins International to develop a three-year plan to fill critical areas of need in achieving universal education for all children with disabilities in Bhutan.