Special teachers to handle differently-abled children

A LAWMAKER has filed a bill seeking to train more teachers in public schools to handle classes exclusively for children with autism and other diseases.

Rep. Winston Castelo (2nd District, Quezon City) authored House Bill 6201 to institutionalize the proportionate scholarship slots in every legislative district that will train and educate teacher-scholars involved in the field of special education.

Castelo said the bill is not only to have a limited number of teacher-scholars or special education teachers (SPED) who will later cater to children with autism but also to form a sizeable community of teacher-scholars to be trained and educated in the field of special education.

Castelo said under the 2012 Scholarship Program for Special Education of the Department of Education (DepEd), only 30 special education teachers will be assign to handle children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) all over the country.

The others diseases are Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), learning disabilities and dyslexia, a learning disability that impairs a person’s fluency or comprehension accuracy.

“There is no denying that inclusive education means that all learners, including those who are differently-abled should be cared for as well,” Castelo said.

The bill envisions that every legislative district throughout the country be allotted the budget requirements to support special education teachers to pursue training and education on the field at the Philippine Normal University.

“SPED teachers and centers nationwide form the backbone of educating everyone or at the exclusion of not a single one on account of autism, ASD, or related concerns, for problems like these should not be a deprivation,” Castelo said.

Castelo said DepEd is also a signatory to the United Nations initiated Education for All (EFA) campaign, which aims to ensure quality basic education accessible to all learners.

“This is quite apart from other education-outreach programs for indigenous peoples, out-of-school children, or learning in difficult circumstances,” Castelo said.

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