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Ghana Education Service Accused of Insensitivity towards Students with Disabilities

Deputy Eastern Regional Secretory of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Mr. Peter Boateng has chided the Ghana Education Service for its “insensitivity” towards People with Disabilities (PWDs).

According to him, the GES has not been fair towards students with disabilities in terms of its provisions and arrangements towards schools.

Many concerned bodies continue to interrogate the challenges and connection between mega infrastructure in most educational facilities, particularly tertiary institutions and accessibility of students with one form of disability or another for effective academic work.

Many institutions in Ghana have resorted to building gargantuan infrastructure to effectively maximize the use of limited land for future expansion and for aesthetic purposes. While the flourishing and expansion of these buildings are plausible, adequate access to this infrastructure has remained a serious challenge to students with disabilities.

The livid Mr. Boateng who made the observation on Rite FM’s District Education Observer Programme, DEOP II Programme on Thursday said government only paid lip service to the plight of people with disabilities.

“The GES only pays lip services to the plight of the physically-challenged and always talking about them as if it cares but in truth does not. It does not make any provisions for them while putting up school infrastructures for easy accessibility,” Mr. Boateng lamented.

To him, persons living with disabilities are “special” especially when education is concerned and hence the need to factor their concerns in the establishment of educational infrastructure.

“People with disabilities are special people when it comes to education and there is the need to provide special infrastructures and teaching and learning materials to create a conducive environment for them to acquire knowledge as their able counterparts,” he charged.

This phenomenon impacts negatively on the academic performances of disabled students and a direct contravention to the freedom of movement enshrined in the Ghanaian constitution.

Many human rights activists and educational stakeholders argue that discrimination, social exclusion and the various physical curtailment of movement of students with disabilities in various institutions constitute a core human right violation.

STAR-Ghana with financial funding from DANIDAUkaid and the European Union is supporting Rite FM in the ongoing District Education Observer Project (DEOP II) which seeks to help improve the academic performance of 10 schools in the Yilo Krobo Municipality.

The yearlong project which started in June, 2017 is at it monitoring stage, ensuring successful implementation and achievement of results from action plans drawn during the school based problem identification stage (the Community Score Card Phase).

These action plans are expected to be implemented across all ten project schools namely; Ogome Anglican JHS, Sra Presby JHS, Obenyemi JHS, Huhunya JHS, Akorley JHS, and Salosi JHS. The rest include New Somanya Methodist JHS, Brukum Agavenya JHS, Aketebuor Salvation Army JHS and the Abrewankor MA Junior High School.

Source, Prince Paul Amuzu/www.ritefmonline.org/princeamuzu667@gmail.com

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