The deaf community is calling for the Malaysian Sign Language to be taught in schools

OVER two decades have passed, but Malaysia’s deaf community is still fighting an uphill battle for its “mother tongue” – the Malaysian Sign Language (Bahasa Isyarat Malaysia or BIM) – to be used in schools.

Although the Education Ministry has adopted Unesco’s Salamanca Statement and Framework for Action on Special Needs Education (1994) and the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Act (2008), and put in place policies in accordance with the Act, deaf students are still denied the opportunity to learn in BIM, said Malaysian Federation of the Deaf (MFD) executive director Mohamad Sazali Shaari.

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