KOCHI: Special classes and separate teachers are made available to students with disabilities from primary classes onwards, Kerala CBSE Schools Management Association president T P M Ibrahim Khan said. “However, if there is no improvement, there is no point in keeping them in the school. Teachers find it difficult to manage normal students and these children together.
It is only for the betterment of these students they are asked to move to special schools,” he said. The CBSE chairperson’s office said action will be taken against any school denying admission to students with special needs as it is a clear violation of the inclusive education clause in the Right To Education (RTE).
Meanwhile, a feeling of rejection pervades many students with learning disabilities in the long run, said child and adolescent counsellor Naseera Najeeb. “We have encountered numerous cases where children with learning disabilities are ignored. Teachers sometimes prove incapable of understanding them,” she said.
Govt schools show the way
While private schools turn their backs on children with learning disabilities, many government-aided schools in the state have special classes and inclusive education for the disabled (IED) resource teachers to help such students. Government-approved counsellors assess the students and, if diagnosed with a learning disability, IED resource teachers give special assistance to them.
“My daughter, who has dyslexia, is treated equally like all her classmates. After school, the teachers stay back and assist her with studies,” said the mother of 16-year-old Devika, who has been studying in a state-aided school in Kochi for two years now. But these efforts prove too little. “Schools, even the government-aided ones, are not fully equipped to handle them,” said Koshy. “The current mechanism is inadequate. Students need to be given full support systems in school. Only then will the true meaning of inclusive education under RTE be fulfilled.”