The following text is an extract of a report by Kothari Commission (1964-1966)
“The centrally sponsored scheme of Integrated Education for the Disabled Children (IEDC) purports to provide educational opportunities for the disabled children in common schools, to facilitate their retention in the school system. The disabled children who are placed in special schools should also be integrated in common schools once they acquire the communication and daily living skills at the functional level.
The country has witnessed a phenomenal expansion of educational opportunities in the post-independence period. The disabled children, however, have not benefited substantially from this growth in educational facilities. The Government of India, therefore, has brought the education of this group of children for special attention to achieve the goal of education for all. The objective is to integrate the handicapped with the general community at all levels as equal partners, to prepare them for normal growth and to enable them to face life with courage and confidence”.
The emphasis is on inclusive education because when any handicap child leaves a special school, he enters a world of normal people. Blind enters a seeing world, deaf enters a hearing world & physically handicap child enters a mobile world that is totally contrary to what he is used to. In a special educational setup, a child is brought up in a world that does not exist.
It is now high time that special schools encourage mainstream education & function more as resource and training centers for personnel of regular schools for identifying disabled children & adopting the curriculum & teaching methods to suit the individual needs of the pupil. Contrary to what should be happening, Govt. directives & circulars are neither read, understood nor followed by the regular school authorities. Most regular school authorities are non co-operative while admitting a handicap child
Recent findings prove that disabled children have been found to perform better in regular schools and that special schools result in low self esteem & feeling of social inadequacy. Fewer products of special schools opt for higher education or get jobs later in life. To corroborate this finding, we have the highest rate of unemployment among the deaf in India. Though deaf are otherwise normal in every respect & are capable of doing almost every kind of work, it has been found that there is highest number of vacancies in the jobs reserved for them in central & state government. This in turn affects their chances for a good marriage resulting in frustration and depression.