Getting an education with a disability
  • | | March 19, 2010 06:30 PM

Currently, Vietnam has about 4 million people with disabilities, and over 1 million of them are children. Approximately 700,000 disabled children have never been to school and 32.99% who do go, quit. The numbers were released by the Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) on March 18.

A disabled child being taken care of. (Illustrative photo)

According to an official from the MoET, the guidelines on teaching disabled children have not been agreed to at all levels. The aim is to let these children mix with normal children in both primary and secondary schools. However, the demand for teaching manuals, textbooks, and special training programs for children with disabilities has not been met.

Some communities argue that children with disabilities would find it extremely difficult to mix in at school as they do not have the same learning capabilities as normal children. Many teachers have the same thoughts. Special schools may need to be opened to support these children.

According to MoET, for this reason, the target of ensuring that 70% of disabled children have an education in 2010 will have to be postponed until 2015.

Also on the morning of March 18, the Ministry of Education and Training commended 184 outstanding teachers and carers of disabled children in Hanoi. Of those, 164 were female.

The teachers did not shrink from difficulties that they may have met when dealing with disabled children, but instead poured all their hearts and minds into helping them with a great sense of responsibility to care for these disadvantaged students.

Teacher Vu Xuan Nam from Bach Mai Primary School, Hai Ba Trung Distict, Hanoi has 16-years experience with disable children. He is a member of the Aiding for Children Group, Hanoi. Teacher Nguyen Thi Dam, Tan Ky Primaryschool, Tu Ky District, hai Duong Province has had 14 years teaching experience with disabled students. One of her students, Pham Thi Thu Ha had participated in ParaGame 22 and won the bronze medal in swimming. Teacher Nguyen Thuy Hoa, from Nguyen Dinh Chieu High School has been teaching blind students for 22 years.

Teacher Dinh Thi Lan, from Cao Xanh Primary School, Ha Long City, Quang Ninh Province was specially commended. Her student Pham Thi Hoai Huong, with mobility disability, went into Grade 3 when she was already 14 years old. At first sight, Thuong might look like a 6 year-old girl. Her body isn’t capable of supporting her movements as a result of Agent Orange’s effect. Thuong has to totally depend on her mother who doesn’t have a job and grandparents. Thuong’s younger brother is also disabled like Thuong. With great compassion and devotion, teacher Lan has spent most of her time to take care and educate Thuong. As a result, Thuong has won first prize in the “Most beautiful writing” competition at school level and a special prize in “Most beautiful writing and displaying of words” at city level.

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