Schools for Special Children and Divyangs: Ministry of HRD Report

Schools for Special Children and Divyangs: Minister of State HRD Report


There is no provision in the Ministry of Human Resource Development to sanction/ open new schools for special/ mentally challenged divyang students.

However, Under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) of this Ministry, focus is on providing inclusive education to children with special needs (CWSN) in a neighborhood school, wherein children with and without disabilities participate and learn together in the same class. 

Similarly under Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA), the Scheme Inclusive Education of Disabled at Secondary Stage (IEDSS) is implemented to enable all students with disabilities an opportunity to complete four years of secondary schooling in an inclusive and enabled environment. 

Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities is implementing a scheme namely Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS) under which grant-in-aid is provided to Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) for running special schools after functioning for a minimum period of 2 years. It does not provide funds for opening of special schools or any other project under DDRS. 

The numbers of special schools assisted by Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities are 371 during 2016-17. The total no. of special schools being assisted in Karnataka are 5 in the year of 2016-17 (Information given at Annexure). 

The focus of SSA is on providing inclusive education to CWSN in a neighborhood schools. IEDSS under RMSA encourages students with disabilities to complete four years of secondary schooling (classes IX to XII) by taking admission in the neighborhood secondary school. The enabling feature in the scheme is the provision of transport and escort allowances. This activity is sanctioned under the schemes annually to encourage and enable CWSN to attend regular school and to save their travelling time. 

The matter relating to not providing admission to children comes within the purview of State Government. 

As per RTE Amendment Act, 2012, children with disability have been included in the 25% admission quota given to disadvantaged children in private schools in consonance with Section 12(1)(c) of the RTE Act. The act is an enabling legislation and does not restrict access to children with disability to neighborhood schools within 25% reservation alone. 

Section 17 of the said Act, mandates Government and the local authorities to provide the following to children with disabilities:— 

(i) Books, other learning materials and appropriate assistive devices to students with benchmark disabilities free of cost up to the age of eighteen years; (ii) to provide scholarships in appropriate cases to students with benchmark disability; (iii) to make suitable modifications in the curriculum and examination system to meet the needs of students with disabilities such as extra time for completion of examination paper, facility of scribe, exemption from second and third language courses. 

SSA provides Rs. 3000/- per child per annum for the interventions related to education of CWSN. The major interventions under SSA are provision of free aids and appliances, transport, escort support, appointment of resource teachers, therapeutical support and barrier free access etc. 

Under IEDSS in addition to the above listed interventions, Rs.3000/- per child per annum is provided as Central Assistance to be topped by the States by a scholarship of Rs.600/- per disabled child per annum. This includes monthly stipend of Rs. 200/- to the Girl students with disability. 

As per Section 34 (1) of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, every appropriate Government is mandated to appoint in every Government establishment, not less than four per cent of the total number of vacancies in the cadre strength in each group of posts meant to be filled with persons with benchmark disabilities of which, one percent each shall be reserved for persons with benchmark disabilities namely (i) blindness and low vision; (ii) deaf and hard of hearing; (iii) locomotor disability including cerebral palsy, leprosy cured, dwarfism, acid attack victims and muscular dystrophy; iv) autism, intellectual disability, specific learning disability and mental illness; (v) multiple disabilities from amongst persons under clauses (a) to (d) including deaf-blindness in the posts identified for each disabilities. 

This information was given by the Minister of State (HRD), Shri Upendra Kushwaha today in a written reply to a Lok Sabha question. 

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