Teacher Training of Betreuungsverein Dortmund

Summary

This Betreuungsverein provides training for school teachers on legal issues relating to people with (intellectual) disabilities. The motivation was the constant requests from family members to the teachers to provide this information. This practice can support the transition to a legally capable adult.

Issue addressed

Training of teachers on legal issues.

Background information

In Germany, people with intellectual disabilities at 18 have full legal capacity. The Civil Code, however, foresees that if persons are unable, temporarily or permanently, to manage their affairs, the Court can appoint a custodian (Betreuer). Even if persons are subject of a custodianship measure, they remain legally fully capable whatever is the severity of their disability in the custodianship procedure.

Description of practice

The Betreuungsverein Dortmund has organised a training programme for teachers at special schools because those are regularly asked by parents and family members about legal issues. In a course of 16 hours, the following contents are addressed:

  • Social Security
  • Work in a sheltered workshop or on the open labour market
  • Living possibilities after leaving the parent’s home
  • Disability card
  • Criminal law: pupils as victims and pupils as perpetrators
  • Human Rights: self-advocacy versus decision-making by others

Analysis

It is certainly a positive approach that people working with or as custodians (Betreuer) are providing directly to frontline staff (as teachers) knowledge and experiences about legal issues that are of concern to families with children with disabilities. In this way, the transition to a legally capable adult can be prepared and made much easier.

Unfortunately, the teacher training seems to be available at the moment only for special teachers. It would be excellent to extent this in the implementation of inclusive education also to regular school teachers.

More information

http://btv-lebenshilfe-dortmund.de/application/cms/website.php?id=/index/ag18/beratung/lehrerfortbildung.htm

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