Children with disabilities are marginalised and become vulnerable in many countries towards getting excluded from education due to the lack of inclusive infrastructure in regular schools. Education is essential for children as it helps them get new horizons in life.
However, children with disabilities often struggle to participate in regular schools for several reasons. As a result, they lack the confidence to move forward in life. The World Bank and the World Health Organisation estimate that one billion people on Earth suffer from some form of disability. Of those, it’s estimated that nearly 150 million are children.
Children with disabilities are 10 times less likely to attend school than other children due to the lack of inclusive infrastructure in educational spaces. According to a report by the Global Partnership for Education, over 90 per cent of children in low-income countries don’t go to school.
Despite the significant number of children with disabilities who don’t attend school, there aren’t any specific laws that direct the state to focus on inclusive education. However, some of the special schools can be seen in developed countries, but that makes the children more conscious of their disability.
Barriers To Children With Disabilities In Schools
Many child rights activists have highlighted that regular schools should have an inclusive infrastructure to support education for children with disabilities. According to reports, some regular schools in India have made it inclusive, but they witness low enrolment rates from children with disabilities.
Some regular schools have shown high dropout rates as children with disabilities leave school early without attending secondary school. In regular schools, they face an increased risk of school violence, bullying, and an unsafe environment created by their peers.
In regular schools that don’t have inclusive features, disabled children face the primary challenge of physical inaccessibility. Another barrier is the lack of recognition, as regular schools are of the opinion that disability is a form of weakness. Due to such reasons, children with disabilities are segregated from other children.
There are hundreds of challenges that they face, and that forces them to drop out early. However, there are several independent organisations in India working towards spreading awareness in regular schools about disability. They also help the school equip with disabled-friendly resources that simplify the education process for children.
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