The government has been asked to improve the infrastructure, the learning and teaching environment in schools catering for pupils with special needs in order to enable them to exercise their fundamental rights without any hindrance. The request was made by some students with special needs studying at the Mgori Coeducational Primary School of the Singida District Council.
They said that despite the implementation of the inclusive education policy by the government which obliges students with special needs to study with normal students, the problem of special learning, poor teaching and infrastructure remains an obstacle to their access to quality education.
âThere is no dorm here. In fact, we sleep in a room that was once a classroom before it was turned into a teachers’ office and now it’s our dorm,â said Obed Williard, the one of the students.
He added; âAt least I have blurred vision, but there are students who cannot see at all. We live in this dormitory with the toilet outside. Imagine the challenges we face overnight. even hurt by the wrong people. “
Another student, Amiri Mohamed, said the institution lacks necessary learning materials, such as braille machines and special drawing papers, forcing blind students to rely on others to read for them on the blackboard. before writing the same thing on their slates.
âThe exams are also presented in text form, ignoring students with special needs. So you have to stay put until your office colleague with vision reads the text for youâ¦ we are truly experiencing some untold stories here that no one can imagine, âhe lamented.
The students said there is a need for the government to consider the possibility of improving the learning and teaching environment in order to encourage parents and guardians to send their children with special needs to school, instead of hiding them at home thinking they would experience more suffering at school.
Hemed Kilango, a teacher in charge of the school’s special education unit admitted that he faces a major challenge in teaching children, citing the lack of necessary teaching tools.
“We have little or no budget to afford enough hats, sunglasses or skin oils for students with albinism, for example,” he added.