The Commission on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities warned against isolating students with disabilities, but said continued training for educators was essential.
Samantha Pace Gasan was reviewing an incident in Gozitan where a teacher broke his arm after being yelled at by a student.
The incident occurred at a resource center where students with severe disabilities receive some or all of their instruction.
The issue was alerted by the Malta Teachers Union on Wednesday, and the Ministry of Education later said it would set up a working group to review the status of the resource centre.
Pace Gasan expressed solidarity with the injured educators, but called attention to the issue so as not to stigmatize disabled people and their families.
Without going into the merits of a particular case, she said that people with disabilities who tend to express themselves in ways that are socially unacceptable should listen and help prevent situations from spiraling out of control. We said we should provide the necessary support.
“People with disabilities are complete people with interests, aspirations and talents, as well as a range of emotions and concerns. We need to take into account the possibility that we may feel or experience heightened sensations that lead to anxiety in certain situations or environments that are uncomfortable,” said Pace Gasan.
She said the CRPD acknowledged the concerns raised regarding the protection of workers and other students, but argued that students with disabilities should not be excluded or segregated.
“Continued training of school personnel is essential to create a truly inclusive society,” said Pace Gassan.
The CRPD wants the Ministry of Education to set up a working group to address these challenges and argues that this should be one of the top priorities to be addressed in schools.