Lecture 7 from the online course “Disability and Social Inclusion”
Summary: The education of children with mental and intellectual disabilities during the period of socialism was a particular aspect of the general care provided by special institutions. Pedagogical activity in the homes used to fall under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Public Health and Social Care (MoPH).
One of the lecture’s main goals is to provide a comprehensive outline of the education in Bulgarian social homes for children. The degree of individualization fostered by care and pedagogical efforts in the institution will be analyzed. However, the development of cognitive abilities is not always advocated.
Archival funds of homes for children with mental disabilities, containing programme drafts, sample lesson plans, as well as ministerial decrees, were used. Unfortunately, the archival data represent a short time span (1960’s and 1970’s) and a limited number of structures. However, teaching practices are at least partially described in them. The lagging development of pedagogy stems from the lack of specialized university training for prospective staff. The Ministry of Education and Culture has not come up with a monolithic concept for children’s education. It goes through various ordinances, decrees, recommendations and chaotic courses that are not even related to each other.
However, the programs in the different homes are unified. They place an enormous emphasis on both self-care and basic skills for survival in the world. Some exceptions to this include classes in cooking, home repairs, communication with other people and filling out paperwork. Standard school subjects adapted to those with limited cognitive abilities have also been developed – elementary writing, elementary arithmetic, singing.Another part of the programme is occupational therapy, which acquires the tone of “repaying” for the care provided, rather than picking up work habits per se, and thus helps child’s reintegration into society.
Lecturer: Georgi Todorov, BAS
Date: 30 October 2023
Start: 11:00 Eastern European Time (10:00 CET)
End: 12:30 p.m. Eastern European Time (11:30 CET)
Format: Online session via Zoom
Registration: You may register by clicking the button on the right
More about the ‘Social Inclusion and Disability’ course you can find here.