Comment: Breaking down the ‘fear of labels’
Paper Edition | Page: 8
Aug. 6, p28
The fear of stigma against children with special needs is sometimes strong enough to keep parents in a state of denial, according to Rovanna Bawden from the Australian International School (AIS).
Bawden is AIS’ Student Support Center head. The center is a new unit for children with disabilities. As the only international school with a designated support center for children with special needs, Bawden said they are attempting to break down the “fear of labels”.
Let’s also hope that the fees are as “humane” as their objectives. Part of the problem in managing special needs children in the country is the cost, aside from reliable support.
“According to data from the ministry, in 2011 there were around 1,680 special schools and 967 inclusive schools at the elementary and junior high level in Indonesia.
Many, however, are still struggling to provide for students with special needs.”
This is what the government is great at: putting up numbers that are completely meaningless.
With such a staggering amount of supposed “academic support”, you’d think that there’d be a healthy national awareness regarding special children in the country.
But the reality is divorced from the figures.
How extensive is the support from the ministry? Allocate funds and that’s it?
How susceptible is that to corruption?
Is there compliance? Or are they just handing out the money with no controls whatsoever?
N. Mark Castro