Only 25 teachers for over 5,700 differently abled students in Chandigarh’s govt schools

Only 25 teachers for over 5,700 differently abled students in Chandigarh’s govt schools

A CBSE directive issued in June 2017 asked all schools affiliated to the board to mandatorily appoint a special educator in every school on immediate basis.

PUNJAB Updated: Jul 27, 2018 13:39 IST
Parina Sood
Parina Sood 
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
teachers,govt schools,differently abled students
Despite a CBSE directive making it mandatory for all affiliated schools to have at least one special educator on their campus, there are only 25 special educators for over 5,700 differently abled students in the 115 government schools of the city.
While 21 special educators cater to the needs of more than 4,500 children with special needs studying in Classes 1 to 8, there are only four special educators for around 1,200 special children studying in Classes 9 to 12.
A CBSE directive issued in June 2017 asked all schools affiliated to the board to mandatorily appoint a special educator in every school on immediate basis. This directive was issued based on Section 3, 8(c) and 9(c) of the Right to Education Act, 2009 to facilitate effective and meaningful inclusion of children with disabilities in schools.
“Due to the shortage of staff, one teacher ends up looking at three clusters (15-16 schools) at a time. It is difficult to concentrate on these students individually. They have special needs, special syllabus and need time,” says a special educator requesting anonymity.
Given the unavailability of these educators on a regular basis, differently abled students, including those suffering from vision, hearing, speech impairment and slow learners, are often left to regular teachers who cite difficulty in giving special attention that these children require. “We do our best but we have to take care of all the students. How can we devote more time to these children?” says a government schoolteacher, on the condition of anonymity.
Education secretary BL Sharma says, “Under Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan, two special educators are needed per block and we are well placed according to it. However, in 2016, after the introduction of Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act (2016), we sent a proposal to the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) for creation of 194 posts of special educators. We are awaiting that sanction.”

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