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Wednesday , September 30 2020

Fabric of distance education encircles ‘special education’ schools in Kuwait

‘Need to tackle issue before start of school year’

KUWAIT CITY, July 27: Ministry of Education has fallen into the distance education quandary with serious repercussions for all its sectors, as the fabric of this system threw its threads around the special education schools, leaving dozens of questions for which there are no satisfactory answers – despite beginning the countdown for the resumption of high school teachers on August 9, reports Al-Rai daily.

The most important aspect of the question is that Al-Amal, Al-Nour and Al-Rajaa schools have dozens of students in the twelfth grade who have visual, hearing and movement disabilities, so how will they be catered for in the “online” system? An educational source was quoted as saying each of the special education schools have their own specifications, which do not go with the educational portal, stating the needs of students in those schools in detail, beginning with Al-Nour School for visual disabilities whose students need talking computers.

The question is: Has the ministry provided a talking device for every student in that school? The ministry used to assign a number of teachers to help them solve the tests and write answers on their behalf, so what will they do now? Al-Rajaa School for movement disabilities has students with quadriplegia, and the Department of Special Education Schools was dealing more flexibly with them during the testing period.

As for Al-Amal School for hearing disabilities who are most in need of visual education, the source explained that writing in their teaching process is not useful, as well as the primary and middle school intellectual education students and those in the rehabilitation schools.

He said “it is necessary to appoint a support teacher in the class to control their involuntary behavior”. How about the online learning, he asked. He pointed to students with “Down Syndrome” and their very simple abilities, in addition to autistic students who need a specialized teaching program, stressing that dozens of obstacles and negatives have begun to surface in the schools where distance education is considered a miracle.

He reiterated the need to deal with this thorny problem in the Ministry of Education before the start of the new academic year in October. He said that Law 8/2010 guarantees for this category all educational, training and cultural services in all educational stages, including kindergarten and elementary, in proportion to their physical, sensory and mental capabilities.

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