Persons with disabilities seek inclusive education

The Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) on Monday in Abuja, called for inclusive education to meet the educational needs of students with disabilities.

Mr Chris Agbo, Secretary, JONAPWD, Abuja Chapter, made the call in an interview with our correspondent.

Agbo stressed that students with disabilities were more likely to drop out of school due to the inability of schools to meet their learning needs.

He said “I want government to encourage children with disabilities to go to school by making every school be it primary, secondary or university inclusive.

“If the government schools start that, the private schools will begin to copy them.

“The major thing they need to provide is to make sure that there is sign language interpretation in all the schools and they need to provide rams so that students with disabilities can easily access those schools,’’ Agbo said.

He also emphasised the need to adopt curriculum that would inspire students with disabilities to improved education.

“A curriculum that has not been adapted to their needs may mean they do not have the same access to education as their classmates do.

“When you tinker with the curriculum that means every class will have a sign language interpreter alongside the main teacher so that they can carry them along.

“Again, every material must come in a format that the blind person can easily understand and they have to be in every school,’’ he added.

Agbo pointed out that having those facilities in place would mean bringing the schools closer to the residence of people with disabilities.

“When you encourage inclusive education what it means is that there is no area that you will not see a school that is very close to people.

“It means there will be a learning pattern that will accommodated everybody including persons with disabilities.

“It means that persons with disabilities in that area can easily go to schools; their parents can take them to schools without going very far.

“But what we have presently is a situation where they will have special schools for example, they have just one deaf school and that is the only one in Kuje.

“`They will have to tell parents that the child has a hearing problem that you will have to take your child down to Kuje.

“So, imagine a parent with such a child will have to go all the way down to Kuje before that child can go to school and that is a problem,’’ Agbo said


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