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Expanding horizons

DNIS News Network - The Society for Child Development, a Delhi-based NGO, has published a book designed to benefit physically and mentally challenged children.

The book on inclusive education, Within Walls, Without Boundaries, focusses on the simple teaching techniques, such as chalk and talk, that can be used to assist children with special needs and makes the case for promoting education for disabled students.

Each chapter highlights a different technique and focusses on a specific type of disability. Besides this, the book dissects the laws that have been framed for the disabled people, such as the Disabilities Act 1995. In the opinion of the author, such laws are open to too much interpretation, making them inaccessible to the general public as there is a shortage of skilled lawyers to interpret these laws.

It is hoped that Within Walls, Without Boundaries will become an integral part of teacher training courses. If the proposed changes are implemented it will affect about 40 million children with physical and mental disabilities.

Ms Madhumita Puri, director of Society for Child Development, who has co-edited the book (along with George Abraham), said: "It is an attempt to create sustainable environment for handicapped children within the bounds of a conventional Indian class-room. And for this, teachers have to be trained. After all, they are the ones who are most in touch with the children."