Introduction

Inclusive education means:

  • Education where it is self-evident and natural to welcome all children at the same school, regardless of appearance, interests, developmental level, intelligence, educational needs, gender
  • Education where it is self-evident and natural that everyone belongs to the group, that we all differ, that in social contact we are aware of these differences, respect them and take them into account .
  • Education that adapts itself to the learning and development needs of each individual student.


A social ideal.
An educational ideal.

The Dutch government is aiming to introduce inclusive education. What is this aim based on?

In 1994, in Salamanca, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) issued a statement signed by 92 countries, including the Netherlands, which states that every child has the right to education in a regular school, in their own environment . The education is determined by differences in characteristics, interests, abilities and educational needs. This statement builds on the Declaration of Human Rights from 1948, which specifically names the right to education for all.

The Salamanca Statement was signed in 1994 by the Dutch government, together with 91 other countries in Europe, by which the Netherlands undertook to realize the contents of the declaration. In 2003, at a meeting of 40 countries , it was found that the Netherlands was lagging behind in their efforts compared to other countries.