Creating a model of inclusive local environment in Bitola

On June 27, 2022, a public debate entitled "Creating a model of a local inclusive community" was held in the Municipality of Bitola, which is part of the "Inclusion of children with special educational needs" project. The purpose of the event was to promote the results so far within the framework of the project, but also to discuss the current situation, needs and challenges in the direction of building an inclusive local environment. In the presence of representatives from the local government, primary and secondary schools in the city, civil society organizations and organizations of persons with disabilities, a school with a resource center, a support center, parents and day care centers, a discussion was held that resulted in constructive recommendations and needs. Among the more significant recommendations that emerged from this meeting are: strengthening cooperation at the local level and using existing resources to overcome challenges and barriers for the participation of all students in the process of education and social life; strengthening the professional competencies of teachers, educators, high school professors and university professors in the direction of creating an inclusive climate in educational institutions; Overcoming architectural and learning barriers by improving accessibility and providing assistive technology and didactic materials; using the existing services and resources offered by the school with the resource center and the support center in support of schools and others. As representatives of "Mobility Bitola", our members Fanche Georgievska and Lidija Veljanovska attended and actively participated in the debate. The project "Inclusion of children with special educational needs" is implemented by the Assistive Technology Association "Open the Windows" from Skopje with the support of the Pestalozzi Children's Foundation. At the level of the municipality of Bitola, the project includes the elementary schools "Elpida Karamandi" and "Kole Kaninski", as well as the school with resource center "Kocho Racin".