SDM-run institute aims to make vocational training easier for students with disabilities

Dakshina Kannada’s first Industrial Training Institute (ITI), where both disabled and non-disabled students will be imparted industrial skills together, is set to be opened at Vamanjoor on the outskirts of the city on August 10.

Managed privately by the Shri Dharmasthala Manjunatheswara Education Society, the SDM Mangaljyothi Industrial Training Institute would offer four courses – a one-year multi-media animation course, a two-year electronic mechanic course, a one-year industrial garment making course, and a six-month course on auto electrical and electronics.

The ITI is accredited by the National Accreditation Board for Education and Training under the Quality Council of India. The certificates issued are authorised by the National Council for Vocational Training, according to administrator for the ITI Ganesh Bhat V.

He said that the mentally challenged, students with learning disability, the physically disabled, hearing and vision-impaired students, and students with autism would be trained alongside non-disabled students at the institute. Two non-disabled students would be admitted per disabled student.

A maximum of 21 students could be admitted per course. The criteria for selection of students for the course is SSLC pass, except for the industrial garment making course, which requires only an eighth standard pass certificate. The last date for admission is August 7.

Non-disabled students would help the disabled in the process of learning. The institute has 12 faculty members including the principal, Mr. Bhat said.

The society also manages SDM Mangaljyothi Integrated School, where both disabled and non-disabled students from LKG to tenth standard study together. The school, started in 1981, presently has 483 students, of which 160 are disabled.

In addition, SDM runs Mangaljyothi Vocational Training Centre where short term courses ranging from six months to a year were being offered, with certificates being issued by the centre itself. The centre offers courses like cellphone repair, doll making and rexin bag making among others.

Mr. Bhat said both the school and the ITI’s building have ramps instead of steps.