Association threatens to launch an agitation

The Karnataka State Association for Special Educators and Supportive Staff has threatened to launch an agitation if the State government failed to announce grants to more special schools that educate the challenged children.

In a statement here on Tuesday, the office-bearers of the association demanded that the State government should commit itself to ensuring free and effective education of every special child by announcing grants to all special schools.

Very few get grant

Of the 300-odd special schools in the State, only 38 schools were getting grants from the State government and 92 from the Centre.

A few schools were getting grants under the child-centric (Shishukendrita) grants of the State government.

The schools getting grants from the Centre were paying Rs. 3,800 to teachers and Rs. 2,500 to the supportive staff while those getting State grants were getting benefits on par with primary school teachers.

Those getting State grants under the new child-centric grants got Rs. 6,000 and Rs. 3,500 respectively.

Many schools being run by non-governmental organisations were in a pitiable condition as the assistance being given by the Centre was reduced year after year.

No takers

Consequently, hardly a few were keen to become special educators. This was evidenced by the fact that barely a few candidates were there in the two special educators training institutes in Bangalore and Mangalore, the release said.

The association has threatened to launch an agitation on December 7 if grants were not announced to the remaining special schools on December 3 when International Day of Persons with Disability is celebrated. Special children would be asked to troupe into the office of the Department of Differently Abled and Senior Citizens in V.V. Towers, near Vidhana Soudha, Bangalore, on December 7, the statement said.

It had been signed by Association president Agnes Kundar and general secretary Vasanth Kumar Shetty.

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