KUALA LUMPUR: The Education Ministry is working on more inclusive education for disabled students.
Deputy Education Minister Datuk Mary Yap said the first step was to create better awareness among parents and the public.
“In Malaysia, some parents may even be embarrassed to admit that their child has a disability.
“But we need to let them know that there’s nothing to be ashamed about,” she said at a discussion themed “Inclusive education for the global knowledge economy in Asean: A Focus on Malaysia” organised by Universiti Malaya and the Institute on Disability and Public Policy.
Yap said among the challenges faced by disabled students were the shortage of qualified teachers and the lack of uniformed access to education.
“Chapter 4 of the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 states that the ministry is committed to moving more students with special needs towards raising the quality of provision,” she said.
Disabled students would be allowed to study in regular classrooms under the ministry’s inclusive education programme.
Susilah Ahmad, head of the ministry’s Special Education Division Micro Planning Unit, said as of April, 58,253 special needs students had been enrolled in regular schools.
Of these, only 7,797 students were in inclusive education programmes.