High Court Says Government Must Fund Specialized Preschools
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
December 15, 2005
ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA--The Supreme Court of the Republic of Karelia, in the northwest region of Russia, ruled late last month that the Russian government is required to provide specialized preschool for children with disabilities.
Three sets of parents filed suit against a government-funded kindergarten that had refused to serve their children claiming they did not have the facilities, staff or equipment needed to do so. The parents had decided against in-home services, reasoning that the children would be denied the opportunity to build relationships with others in social settings.
On November 23, the Supreme Court ruled that the government couldn't use claims of a lack of resources as a pretext for failing to provide specialized preschool facilities.
According to a press statement from the Budapest-based Mental Disability Advocacy Center, which filed a "friend of the court" brief on behalf of the parents, thousands of children across Russia are still labeled as "uneducable" and sent to institutions that ignore the children's fundamental right to education.
"Russian Appeal Court Declares States Denial to Provide Services to Children with Disabilities Unlawful" (Mental Disabilities Advocacy Center)