Consultancy: International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) Specialist

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Application deadline 4 months ago: Tuesday 5 Jul 2022 at 20:55 UTC

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UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, a chance!

Within the disability framework, UNICEF is looking for a consultant to work on the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health.

How can you make a difference?

Work Assignment:

Background This assignment is part of UNICEF’s flagship programming initiative on Equity and Inclusion in education in Lebanon. UNICEF Lebanon supports the Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MEHE) to implement inclusive education for children with disabilities through the inclusive education pilot school programme. The programme aims to support the most marginalized children to access quality education and integrated services which address multiple needs. The Lebanese Education system enrolls nearly 1.1 million students. The out-of-school rate for primary and secondary school-aged children is high. It is estimated that 21% of Lebanese children were out of school in 2019/2020, most of them have a disability. Since 2012, Lebanon has experienced one of the largest influxes of Syrian refugees, with more than 356,000 Syrian refugee children enrolled in formal and non-formal education in 2019 and 400,000 refugee children remaining out of learning. The COVID-19 pandemic further reinforced the existing vulnerabilities and deepened inequities in access to education, social and other services. Lebanon ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991 and has exhibited commitment to improving the condition of the child and protecting its well-being. Lebanon was also among the first to sign the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in 2007 but has yet to ratify the Convention and implement the articles of Law 220/2000 to secure the inclusion of people with disabilities. The inclusive education pilot school programme includes a strong focus on capacity building, provision of support services, developing policies and procedures around inclusion, and advocacy and technical support. The project has generated evidence-based data that will be used to inform the development of an Inclusive Education Policy of Lebanon. During the 2021-2022 academic year, the number of inclusive schools in the pilot programme will be increased to a total of 60 public schools. MEHE, with the technical support of UNICEF, is planning to develop a National Inclusive Education policy and its implementation roadmap to provide a comprehensive framework for further implementation of inclusive education.

The International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) provides a clear framework for non-restrictive eligibility procedures to be used in the assessment and the design of services for learners with disabilities; it identifies the learner’s “requirements” in terms of adaptation, special assistance, accommodation, support, or environments that would maximize both the academic and social support for the learner, within the context of inclusive education. The ICF is the WHO framework that was officially endorsed by all WHO Member States in 2001 as the international standard to describe and measure health and disability: International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) ( A full description of ICF eligibility procedures is provided in Hollenweger, J. (2011), Development of an ICF-based eligibility procedure for education in Switzerland, BMC Public Health, 11(Suppl 4):S7 Purpose of the consultancy: The overall objective of this consultancy is to support, in collaboration with the lead consultant, MEHE for advancing the development of the inclusive education policy framework in Lebanon. The specific role of the ICF expert is to ensure that ICF is embedded in the draft inclusive education policy framework and to support key partners in understanding how the ICF model is underpins all efforts to develop and implement rights-based inclusive education. How can you make a difference? Lebanon needs a unified terminology and a CRPD-aligned classification system for disabilities to be used by the MEHE and in schools to ensure a shift from the medical approach toward a human rights-based approach. Because the ICF is a multidimensional, functional, and context-sensitive tool, adherence to the ICF is recommended to ensure that different data collection instruments and sources use the same concepts, criteria and frameworks, thus enabling the generation of a strong, integrated national data base for disability statistics in line with the principles of the CRPD. Application of ICF will improve a design of services for learners with disabilities. Scope of work: The ICF expert will work under the line management of the lead consultant and in close collaboration with the screening expert (to be appointed). The ICF expert will review the existing Lebanese policy framework relevant to inclusive education against the requirements of the ICF model and will make recommendations on how to further embed the ICF model in the development of the inclusive education policy framework. The expert will furthermore undertake a desk review of the use of the ICF model, especially in the MENA region, for the implementation of inclusive education. The ICF expert will support the development of capacity building resources, including workshop materials, to increase the understanding of key partners of the importance and use of the ICF model in implementing inclusive education. The ICF expert will develop a functionality-based screening toolkit, which can be implemented in the inclusive education pilot schools. This will help partners and stakeholders to fully understand how the ICF model supports inclusive education implementation and how it can be used in the Lebanese context. The expert will support and monitor the implementation of the ICF screening toolkit. Field missions will be undertaken to support the facilitation of workshop to increase understanding of the ICF model, to introduce the ICF-based screening toolkit and to contribute to the consultative planning meetings from an the ICF perspective. The expert will provide technical assistance to integrate the ICF framework within the inclusive education policy framework and roadmap. The expert will therefore collaborate closely and communicate regularly with the key partners,

UNICEF and the consultancy team (both international and national consultants) Under the overall guidance of the UNICEF Education Specialist, the Consultant will work closely with the MEHE team and other relevant partners and counterparts to provide operational leadership and relevant technical expertise and assistance to manage and implement the development of a Policy Framework and a Roadmap for its implementation. In agreement with the Supervisor, the International Consultant will draft a work plan based on the key deliverables upon initiating the consultancy. Depending on the rapidly changing needs, some adjustments may be required to the deliverables.

Work Assignment Expected Results

Tasks/Milestone 1: Review national legislation against the ICF framework and make recommendations on how to integrate the ICF approach in the inclusive education policy framework

Deliverables/Outputs 1: Report on ICF implementation in Lebanon.

Timeline 1: Within the two initial months from the start of consultancy. (10 days in July/August)

Tasks/Milestone 2: Key informant interviews on the use of the ICF framework in Lebanon and MENA region, prepare workshop resources to increase understanding of stakeholder on the importance and use of ICF, draft ICF-based screening toolkit to be used in the inclusive education pilot schools Deliverables/Outputs 2: Drafted sections of the assessment and recommendation report, ICF capacity building resources, draft ICF-based screening toolkit

Timeline 2: Within the first quarter from the start of consultancy. (10 days in July-September)

Tasks/Milestone 3: Introduce the draft screening toolkit during the field missions, contribute to the strategic planning meetings from an ICF perspective Deliverables/Outputs 3: Drafted sections of the workshop and capacity building resources and meeting preparations, facilitated workshops and meetings Timeline 3: Within the first-second quarter from the start of consultancy. (15 days in July-October)

Tasks/Milestone 4:Conduct a consultative strategic planning exercise with MEHE, CERD and relevant stakeholders to develop policy outline Deliverables/Outputs 4: Conducted strategic planning workshop with partners, bilateral and team meetings. Submission of agenda, workshop materials, minutes. Timeline 4: Within the first- second quarter from the start of the consultancy (10 days in September-October).

Tasks/Milestone 5: Provide technical assistance to integrate the ICF framework within the policy framework and roadmap, continuous support for the implementation of the screening toolkit Deliverables/Outputs 5: Drafted sections of the policy framework and implementation framework Timeline 5: Within the second quarter from the start of the consultancy (12 days in October-December).

Tasks/Milestone 6: Update the Education Specialist on progress. Deliverables/Outputs 6: Biweekly debrief on progress with a monthly written report on progress against work plan at the end of each month.Monthly progress report at the end of every month. Timeline 6: From the start till end December 2022 (5 days).


To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • An Advanced University Degree in one or more of the following areas: Education, Psychology, Social Sciences, or other relevant degree.
  • Years of Experience required: Minimum eight years professional work experience in education, gender and disability inclusion or related field.
  • Previous experience of working in MENA countries or transition countries is an asset.
  • Proven experience working with government and ministries on policy development.
  • Familiarity with UNICEF’s mission and mandate is an asset.
  • Knowledge/Expertise/Skills required: Strong background in inclusive education programming, pedagogy, education policy and systems development.
  • Expertise in the International Classification Functioning (ICF) would be considered an asset.
  • Previous work on gender mainstreaming or disability inclusion is an asset.
  • Fluency in English is required; knowledge of French or Arabic would be considered an asset.
  • Excellent analytical and report writing skills is essential. Ability to work in a team and as a team leader. Strong interest in the topic.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA).

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


The selection process is done in percentage as follow:

75 % on the technical expertise

25% on the financial offer

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

The selected candidate is solely responsible to ensure that the visa (applicable) and health insurance required to perform the duties of the contract are valid for the entire period of the contract. The candidate may also be subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid).

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