The Government of India is implementing Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) as the main programme for universalising elementary education for all children from 6-14 years of age. Its overall goals include universal access and retention, bridging of gender and social category gaps in education and enhancement of learning levels of children. The focus of SSA is on providing inclusive education to children with special needs (CWSN), wherein children with and without disabilities participate and learn together in the same class.
CWSN need inclusive teaching strategies, adapted curriculum, adapted teaching techniques and modified evaluation strategies. In line with this, the National Council for Educational Research and Training has developed material for training of regular teachers in curricular adaptation at primary and upper primary level. So far 3.59 lakh regular teachers have been trained on this material.
To further strengthen the skills of regular teachers to teach CWSN, they are given category specific training. 195027 teachers have been trained on low vision, 102961 teachers on disabilities, 227206 teachers on intellectual disability, 151977 teachers on cerebral palsy, 189580 teachers on learning disabilities, 173544 teachers on multiple disabilities and 134240 teachers on Autism have been trained till now in SSA.
In Chhattisgarh till now, 799 teachers have been trained on low vision, 10047 teachers have been oriented to the needs of children with blindness, 1317 teachers have been sensitized to the needs the children with mental retardation, 700 teachers have been given training on cerebral palsy, 923 teacher on learning disabilities, 1044 teachers have been trained on multiple disabilities and 956 teachers have been imparted training on Autism under the SSA.
Besides under SSA, two resource persons are engaged in every Block Resource Centre exclusively for CWSN. Under SSA 18174 such resource persons are engaged. In Chhattisgarh, 215 such resource persons are engaged. In Chhattisgarh, 25301 regular teachers have been trained on curricular adaptations.
The Inclusive Education for Disabled at Secondary Stage (IEDSS) component of the integrated Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan caters to the needs of CWSN at secondary level of schooling. Under the IEDSS, any school where the number of the children with disabilities is more than 5, should appoint one special educator. In case the number of children is less, the special educator can work for a cluster of schools. In accordance with this ratio, the requisite number of special educators may be appointed in schools (or for a cluster of schools) for children requiring special teacher support. The special educators provide counselling to the parents, help in identifying the needs of CWSN and help in other ways whenever necessary. 3245 special educators approved under IEDSS are in position at present.
The Ministry of Human Resource Development is giving grant to States and UTs for the salary component of special educators, the subject matter of their recruitment and deployment comes within the purview of the States and UTs concerned.