​Dr. Kumar Mahabir @ Conference on Inclusive Education: Achieving Education for All February 15-18, 2017

Attachment: Draft Schedule of Paper Presentation

Conference on Inclusive Education: Achieving Education for All

Organized by The University of the West Indies
& Potsdam University in New York

February 15-18, 2017


​Inclusion/E​xclusion of Indians​ by CXC
in the CSEC and CAPE History and Literature syllabi


People of East Indian descent (Indians) in the Caribbean number about one and a half million in the English-speaking Caribbean. They constitute about half of the population in Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana and Suriname, and form the largest minority group in Jamaica, St Lucia, St.
Vincent ​and Grenada.

Using content analysis and Paulo Freire’s theoretical framework, this paper examines the extent they, and their indentured forebears, have been excluded in Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) CSEC and CAPE History and Literature syllabi.

In its mandate to pursue socially-just educational practices, The United Nations (UNESCO), the World Forum in Dakar, and the World Conference on Education for All in Thailand have recommended that minority ethnic groups should not be disadvantaged in receiving an education as well as in being excluded in the content of the curriculum.


SECTION 11. Conclusion – The Struggle for Social and Ethnic Justice

Inclusive education is multi-cultural in both theory and practice. At its core, inclusive education has a multi-cultural curriculum which emphasizes basic human similarities and differences in history, ancestry and circumstances. File (1984, p. 5) stated that a multi-cultural curriculum, “should reflect a sympathetic understanding of the different cultures and races that now make up our society.” He added, “The Rampton Report [on West Indian children in England in 1981] formulated a broad aim that ‘all children should learn about their own cultures and histories and those of other groups and see them treated with equal seriousness and respect’” (File, 1984, p. 7, emphasis added). A multi-cultural curriculum in the Caribbean plays a critical role in inscribing a sense of identity in the region and should intersect with the experiences of minority students identified with Hinduism, Islam, Orisha, and other minority faiths (Tsolidis, 2011, p. 17).

Inclusive education prepares students for a globalised world propelled by advancing technologies, international trade, and documented and undocumented migrations. Inclusive education helps students acquire knowledge and appreciation of cultural diversity by shattering myths and stereotypes associated with race, religion, culture and gender. Inclusive education assists to establish social justice and combat prejudice, discrimination, racism, cultural elitism, religious bigotry, political repression, violence, genocide, sexism and classism (Bennett, 2011, p. 10; Pole, 2001, p. 271; Slattery, 2013, p. 175). Inclusive education militates against the perpetuation of “repression of the dignity and identity of the self” (Slattery, 2013, p. 175).

More than one ethnic group living together in small societies in the Caribbean in peace and harmony must not be taken for granted (Worrell, 2004). Minority groups living in these small societies may not protest against cultural domination because of the fear of criticism by dominant vocal groups. Some of these minority groups may become almost invisible to other groups because of their silence. But social and ethnic justice demands social action to combat discrimination and racism. A multicultural education can result in increased knowledge, appreciation and acceptance of cultural diversity. A multicultural education can debunk myths and stereotypes about race, religion and culture and influence better behaviour and attitudes (Bennett, 2011.) Education, therefore, has a huge responsiability in combating all kinds of isms that degrade individuals and groups. “The design, presentation and the experience of the curriculum in schools, colleges, universities and other institutions of learning has a central part to play in achieving this goal” (Pole, 2001, p. 271).

Source: World Hindu News (WHN)