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Disability not a deterrent for them

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S. Lavanya, a student of Little Flower Convent for Blind and Deaf, who scored 952/1000 in the class twelve higher secondary examination.
S. Lavanya, a student of Little Flower Convent for Blind and Deaf, who scored 952/1000 in the class twelve higher secondary examination.

R. Sujatha

Schools run for children with special needs have achieved

CHENNAI: While mainstream schools celebrated their success in the Class XII examinations, the schools run for children with special needs remained quiet.

At the Government Higher Secondary School for the Blind in Poonamallee, of the 35 students who took the examination, 24 cleared it.

At the St. Louis Institute for Deaf and Blind, all 22 visually impaired boys passed with the topper scoring 1068. Eighteen of the 22 hearing impaired boys have succeeded. The toppers in both sections were hostellers. Asked why none of the students had come to the Institute, an official said they would learn about their results from the Internet.

All 14 visually challenged girls studying at the Little Flower Convent for Blind and Deaf and 23 of the 27 speech- and hearing-impaired girls have passed the examination.

They hail from middle-class families and in some cases, have siblings with similar disability. But they are determined to succeed despite the odds, the school authorities said.

Va. Nargees Begum, who is visually impaired, scored 1079. She has an elder brother who is visually challenged. “I want to study English literature and then do Law,” she says. Visually challenged B. Chithra hails from Tiruvallur. She has scored 1072 and wants to pursue English literature. She wants to become a school teacher and then study for IAS. Her father runs a welding shop.

Tamil medium student P. Parameswari (score 1034) wants to study Economics. Her brother is also visually challenged.

Hearing impaired Fathima Banu has scored 953/1000 and wants to become a chartered accountant. To start with, she wants to pursue a degree in B.Com. Her father, Pa. Mohamed Abdullah, is a driver in the Malaysian Embassy. Her classmate, S. Lavanya, scored 952/1000.

While Fathima stood second in the class X examinations, Lavanya came first. Lavanya lost her faculty of speech and hearing following an ailment at the age of five. Her father is a watchman in a private soap company. She would rather pursue a degree in medicine but given her impairment she would settle for computer science, she says.

As the hearing impaired students are from Tamil medium, they will study English as a subject for a year in school before applying for undergraduate courses.

Principal of Little Flower Convent Sister G. Vasanthi said “Usually, hearing impaired children are not recognised for their performance though they score well since they are exempted from taking the English language subject. But, this year we are going to claim recognition for them too.”

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