Bangladesh Disabled School Teachers Association on Monday organised a human chain demanding nationalisation of schools for the disabled, MPO listing and improvement in the living standards of students.
More than five hundred teachers from all over the country took part in the human chain in front of the National Press Club in the morning.
Arifur Rahman Apu, convener of the association, presented an 11-point demand on behalf of teachers and students with disabilities.
The demands are-to provide recognition and MPO to schools according to the integrated special education policy on disability; to ensure salary allowance and all facilities from the date of recognition; to provide stipend to students with disabilities in all schools; free text books in all schools according to school curriculum; providing healthy food to the students with disabilities; ensuring educational materials as per the demand in all schools; ensuring regular monitoring of schools for the disabled; ensuring all relevant facilities including quality improvement training of teachers and staff; construction of disability friendly modern schools; introduction of therapy centres with modern therapy equipment in schools for the disabled, and ensuring self-reliant living with employment as per the qualifications of the students at the end of their education.
"I haven't received a single penny from the school for seven years," Arifur Rahman, a teacher at Gaibandha's Ahmedpur Intellectually Handicapped and Autism School, told The Business Standard.
"I am living a dehumanised life with my children and family. On top of that, we provide the students with travel money, tiffin, and necessary teaching materials with our own money. Or else the students do not want to come to school. We urge the government to nationalise about 2,000 schools for the disabled across the country and to ensure appropriate steps for taking the disabled people forward."