Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the schools and colleges have been closed down. But still, children are getting their education through online classes. But in this case, children with disabilities are not that lucky because for them attending online classes can be a tough job for various reasons.
To address this gap, Samagra Shiksha Kerala has started online classes titled 'White Board’ for the differently-abled children living in Kerala. Since 15 June, the classes are going on. Parents, teachers, and disability rights activists say that this is indeed a welcome move.
As per reports, Kerala has more than 80,000 children with disabilities who are finding it hard to attend online classes. In these four months, differently-abled children have faced a lot of trouble since they were not able to get any training or classes.
The ‘White Board’ online classes do everything in a proper system, first, the teachers will record videos of the lessons. Later, these videos are forwarded to the parents via platforms like WhatsApp and Telegram. Based on children’s disabilities, they have divided the classes into six categories.
A Trivandrum-based wheelchair user, Sharada Devi who is a Ph.D. scholar and also has raised her voice a lot of times and spoken about the many challenges that students with children face.
Sharada Devi says, “I find this latest initiative as a really positive one. It is a fact that we have to depend on online learning for at least some time due to the threat of Coronavirus. What we have to ensure now is that no student loses the opportunity to pursue education with this new model. We all know about Devika who died by suicide last month because she did not have facilities to study online. The families of many disabled children do not have enough facilities which are a cause for concern. Even if they have phones and laptops, are they accessible? But good that the initiative has been taken. Better late than never”.
There is no doubt that this is a great move by the officials. In the future, there should not be any hassles hopefully.
Image credit: online class/ YouTube Screecap