If we look into the data of Census, 2011, the disabled population constitutes 2.21% of the total population of India which was 2.13% in census, 2001 data. Rural (2.24%) residents are more as compared to urban (2.21%) ones as in 2001 data. Percentage of disabled persons in India has increased both in rural and urban areas during the last decade. Decadal increase in proportion is significant in urban areas. If we add population attrition growth for 2020 for ten years at the rate of 1.04% as published by the government of India the number of children with disabilities in 0-19 years is approximately 13,16,907 (around 13 + million children with disabilities.
Government of India has passed a comprehensive legislation Rights of persons with Disabilities ACT in 2016. Some of the key provisions related to education of children with disabilities mentioned in RPwD ACT and NEP 2020 are given below.
The Right to Education is an integral facet of the guarantee of equal rights for children with disabilities and their social inclusion. NEP 2020 is in complete consonance with the provisions of the RPwD Act 2016 and endorses all its recommendations with regard to school education considering inclusive education as a system of education wherein students with and without disabilities learn together. The system of teaching and learning is suitably adapted to meet the learning needs of different types of students with disabilities. Some aspects include as listed below:
· Barrier free access for all children with disabilities
· Assistive devices and appropriate technology-based tools, adequate and language-appropriate teaching and learning materials (e.g., textbooks in accessible formats such as large print and Braille)
· Choice of schooling and equity in education: Children with benchmark disabilities can choose between regular or special schooling and Home-based education (for children with severe and profound disabilities who are unable to go to schools). An audit of home-based education for its efficiency and effectiveness will be initiated and guidelines and standards would be developed based on this audit.
· Resource centers will support the rehabilitation and educational needs of learners with severe or multiple disabilities and will assist parents/guardians in achieving high-quality home schooling and skilling for such students as needed. Special educators along with regular teachers would assist in these tasks.
CBR NETWORK has developed international resource centre since 2 decades and offered services to students in Bangalore university and researchers.
In the light of NEP 2020 there is a need to upgrade the resource centre and also offer services online by establishing digital library of resource materials.
CBR NETWORK under the project Sahayog has collected over 1000 publications, virtual lectures, digital books, software in the area of Inclusive education and CBR which was used by students enrolled in Inclusive education and CBR programmes. These resources will be now available for teachers, media, parents, researchers, medical professionals, therapists etc.