International Legal Consultant - Inclusive Education Legal and Policy Framework
The international consultant will perform comprehensive analyses of alignment of Inclusive Education (IE) relevant legal and policy framework of the Republic of Serbia with the international standards, develop recommendations for further harmonisation, and support the working groups for the improvement of legal/policy framework relevant to IE in Serbia.
UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all qualified candidates, irrespective of nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, gender identity and sexual orientation, as well as persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization. UNICEF’s office is accessible to a certain extent, and employees are entitled to reasonable accommodations that are needed for ensuring equitable working conditions.
Considerable progress has been achieved in the implementation of inclusive education (IE) in Serbia since its introduction in 2009. Under the leadership of the Ministry for Education, Science and Technological Development (MoESTD), with continuous UNICEF support over the past years, reform measures have been taken with focus on developing a comprehensive institutional and policy framework for inclusive education (IE). However, 12 years after, many children with disabilities, Roma children and those from poor households and living in rural areas are still lagging behind and are less likely to benefit from inclusion in mainstream education.
The National Report on Inclusive Education in Serbia (MoETSD with the support of UNICEF, 2018) published on the 10th anniversary of implementation of inclusive education in Serbia has taken stock of progress achieved, as well as challenges in making the national education system fully inclusive. One of the key challenges identified is the need to further improve the national policy and legal framework relevant to IE and harmonize with the international framework and standards as emphasized also in multiple international reviews and reports on the situation in Serbia, including concluding observations of UN committees for the Rights of the Child and for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Additionally, the process of accession of Serbia to EU demands full harmonization of the Serbian legal framework with the EU Law, and the Action Plan for Chapter 23 demands legal and practical changes in education which will improve inclusive education for every child. Legal changes should address further improvement in fully embedding the rights of the children with disabilities in national education laws and regulations related to the transformation of schools for education of children with disabilities and further development of additional support services for their learning in regular education, with focus in improving institutional mechanisms at school, local and national level, use of assistive technology and related in mainstream education, universal design, monitoring and financing of IE. This will also include recommendations on how to improve inter-sectoral collaboration at national, local and school levels.
Work Assignment Overview:
The purpose of this assignment is to provide a review of the national policy and legal framework against the international standards on IE. The consultant will perform comprehensive analyses of alignment of IE relevant legal and policy framework of the Republic of Serbia with the international standards, develop recommendations for further harmonisation, and support the working groups for the improvement of legal/policy framework relevant to IE. This will include the analysis of different sectoral laws which are of importance for the implementation and further development of IE. In this work, the international consultant will be supported and will closely collaborate with a national consultant engaged by UNICEF for this purpose.
Duration of the assignment: October 2021 – December 2022 (up to 21 workdays)
Detailed task description:
The consultant will perform desk review of international, policy and legal documents and based on the developed methodology, analyse alignment of the national legal/policy framework with international standards. The consultant will work in cooperation with the national consultant. The work of the consultant will be guided and supported by UNICEF Serbia Education section.
Task 1: Analyse IE-relevant legal and policy framework:
- Develop a methodology for the review and analysis, and an outline for the report on IE legal and policy framework.
- Review of international documents and studies relevant for the IE legal/policy framework and other relevant documents (as spelled out above, but not limited to).
- Conduct a comparison analysis of international and EU legal standards and good practices, and national legal analysis (prepared by the national consultant) in collaboration with the national consultant.
- Develop findings and recommendations on the alignment of the IE relevant national policy and legal framework with international standards, and participate in the discussion with national stakeholders and partners to present the draft report, obtain feedback, and in line with the feedback prepare a final version of the report.
- Participate in the promotion of the Report and its findings and recommendations.
Task 2: Provide technical support to the Ministry of Education and other relevant public bodies for further development of legal and policy framework relevant to IE:
- Prepare an overview of good practices in Europe and internationally in relation to the specific policy/legal revision to be undertaken by the working groups established for this purpose (up to 4 sessions).
- Advanced degree in education/human rights/social sciences related to inclusive education
- Excellent knowledge of the international and EU legal and policy framework relevant to IE
- Excellent analytical and communication skills
- Experience in performing legal and policy reviews and analyses in EU member states and/or internationally
- Experience in legal and policy reforms
- Knowledge and experience in strategic planning and strategic approach implementation
- Experience in education research and surveys will be an asset
- Fluency English language
How to apply:
The application must include a financial proposal in USD as a separate document, providing the following information:
- Daily rate (all costs included, e.g. usage of mobile phone).
Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration.
Only shortlisted candidates will be notified and advance to the next stage of the selection process.
For every child, you must demonstrate UNICEF's core values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability.
UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.