There has been an increased focus on uniquely-abled children education in India in recent years. Several government-sponsored programs emphasize on inclusive education as a major strategy to reach elementary and secondary schooling.
But there is a challenging paradox where it has been largely acknowledged that uniquely-abled children education has not reached the farthest corners of the country. There exists a stark contradiction between the education received by neuro-typical children and their uniquely-abled peers.
It’s impressive that 97% of uniquely-abled children are enrolled in schools. However, it’s often overlooked that the rate is a small proportion of the number of such children in the country. There are over 200 million children of school-going age in India and the prevalence rate of uniquely-abled children is less than 1.5%. That’s far lower than the prevalence rates in other developing countries like Brazil (around 7%). The rate of identification of uniquely-abled children India is alarmingly low. It thus raises important questions on how to address the requirements of this large section of children who are kept out of the formal school education ambit.
The absence of uniquely-abled children is pronounced in classrooms. Many teachers in mainstream schools are unaware of the needs of uniquely-abled children. They need special apparatus to learn. If the difficulties faced by an uniquely-abled student is not recognized by the teachers.