Finding conditions unsuitable in schools run by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi and the Delhi Government, parents of differently-abled children living in resettlement colonies such as Trilokpuri and Kalyanpuri send their children to a charitable special school in Noida.
Close to 80 to 100 students are picked up from their homes and taken to Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan Charitable School everyday, says Thomas Antony, member of JOSH Sanstan, an NGO which works closely with the community in these areas.
“There are no ramps in MCD schools and even if there is a specific toilet marked for the differently-abled children, it is mostly locked,” he says, adding the other biggest issue is the lack of special teachers to attend to these children.
“School authorities say that there are no special teachers since the number of differently-abled children is very low. But parents prefer not to send children to schools which do not have proper facilities and teaching staff,” says Mr. Antony.
“Even if a child is enrolled in one of the government schools, he or she is usually seated on their own with no one to assist them.”
The lack of special teachers is despite the unified Municipal Corporation of Delhi providing Rs. 18 crore for recruitment of special staff for providing education to differently-abled children in the financial year 2011-12. Yet, it was noted that no expenditure was incurred.
‘Since the number of differently-abled children is very low’