The Central Government has directed all the state governments to take steps for ensuring free education to students with a disability up to the age of 18. Ministry of Human Resource and Development has asked all the state governments to make ‘necessary modifications’ in the curriculum and examination system with an objective to meet the needs of such students. The following are some of the provisions or modifications suggested by the central government: -
- Extra time to complete the examination papers
- Exemption from second and third language courses
- Utilising the facility of amanuensis or scribes
Referring to RPwD (Rights of Persons with Disability) Act, the Ministry of Human Resource and Development suggested the heads of state education departments to enable inclusive classrooms with a conducive learning atmosphere in schools for students with disabilities. Recently, the central government received various complaints regarding the denial of admission to special children in schools across the country.
According to the revised RPwD Act 2016, the appropriate government authorities at regional and local levels must make sure that children with disabilities should have access to free education in an appropriate environment until he/ she attains the age of 18 years.
The MHRD has also informed the states to employ teachers with special needs, who are highly proficient in Braille and sign language to teach children with intellectual disability.
Apart from providing free education to students with the disability up to 18 years, the state government must also take steps to provide books, appropriate assistive devices and learning materials free of cost.