Journal of Social Sciences


Michelle Proyer

Publication Date



More often than not disability - as most other minority-related topics - is perceived as of neglect able interest in policy design. Recent developments show an increased reference towards persons with disabilities and the enablement of their equal and independent lives in Thai legislative. There are several questions that arise from this observation: 1) What led to this development? 2) To which extent is it related to the signature of international agreements (such as the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, UNCRPD in 2008), developments in other (ASEAN) countries, a change in public awareness or the pressure of social movements or personal initiative respectively? And last but not least: 3) In what way does it impact each person with disabilities‟ life and his/her unrestricted access to education? By looking at the role disability has played in Thailand's recent educational policy development and how this affects children with disabilities in elementary school settings, conditions for changes in legislature, general perception and social attitudes will be elaborated on. The investigation of 1) whether there is an actual (intention to) move from a pity- based understanding towards a rights-based one in educational policy, 2) where the urge, motivation or support for such a striking change stems from, 3) how it will be (further) realized and 4) which challenges are to arise from its implication will be of central interest. Reflecting the Odyssey through (G) local Agreements and National Legislation, we can see whether an ASEAN perspective on disabilities makes sense or not.

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