Students with intellectual disabilities frequently drop out of school early, due to a lack of adapted curricula and support. Lifelong learning programmes mostly do not consider the needs of people with intellectual disabilities needs, either, and so they are often systematically denied the opportunity to continue developing their skills and competences throughout life.
This situation significantly weakens their chances to compete in the labour market.
The project “Pathways II” aimed to make lifelong learning programs more accessible to people with intellectual disabilities. It was based on its predecessor “Pathways”, which had developed the tools to achieve this goal, namely
- European standards on how to make information easy to read and understand,
- A training programme as well as guidelines on how to involve people with intellectual disabilities in the writing easy-to-read texts
- A brochure called “Teaching can be easy” with recommendations for lifelong learning staff on how to make their courses more accessible.
- A check-list to evaluate the level of easy to read of a text.
Pathways II built on the heritage of the original Pathways project and multiplied its impact, making those materials available in many European countries.
The project made the Pathways materials available to people with intellectual disabilities and adult education staff in many European countries, namely: Croatia, Czechia, Estonia, Hungary, Italy, Slovenia, Slovakia and Spain.
To ensure that as many people with intellectual disabilities as possible have access to lifelong learning programmes, emphasis was put on the dissemination aspect of the project. Several national-level training events were held in each country.
The project also targeted education providers and decision-makers to help them understand the how accessibility of lifelong learning programmes is to adults with intellectual disabilities.