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Uhuru pledges reform for students with disabilities

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President Uhuru Kenyatta Saturday made a surprise visit to Joytown Secondary school for the physically handicapped where he reiterated that the government will look into ways of reforming the education sector to carter for the needs of students with disabilities.

President Kenyatta said the government will ensure that the reforms to be undertaken in the education sector will streamline remuneration of teachers in schools and institution taking care of the disabled.

He was fulfilling a pledge he had made a week ago to some students from the school who participated in the Seeing is Believing Initiative of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Awards and President’s Award – Kenya held at the slopes of Mount Kenya.

President Kenyatta said the government will ensure all Kenyans get equal opportunities saying it is not fair for disabled pupils some of whom are suffering from cerebral palsy to undertake same exam with those who don’t suffer from any disability.

Two students in the school, Purity Wangare of Form 3 and Gabriel Mutua suffering from cerebral palsy recited moving poems in English and Kiswahili on why the government needs to consider giving special national exam to students with disabilities.

Students who suffer from the disease have challenges writing fast, drawing graphs and are also slow in oral communication.

They said that physically disabled students are forced to do exams in the same format, specifically writing on paper, like other students even though they are limited by their physical state.

The President said his government takes keen interests to the needs of the disabled and that is why he appointed a Principal Secretary in charge of special programmes to ensure they are fully catered for.

“There are many people outside doing wonderful jobs, in fact I have a disabled PS who is doing a fantastic job,” said the President.

Further adding, “We will do everything possible to support this institution and also you as an individual to gain employment or self-employment.”

He pledged to work in partnership with the school to expand its facilities and improve on its infrastructure.

In the spirit of Easter celebrations, the President who was accompanied by the First Lady Margaret Kenyatta and other first family members gave various gifts to the school and also cut a cake with the students and teachers who expressed gratitude to the Head of State for his surprise visit.

The School’s principal Leah Kamunye thanked the President and his family for the surprise visit saying ‘it’s a good Easter surprise.”

The school which was started in 1980 with a population of 30 students has expanded and currently hosts a population of 250 students.

[Source: All Africa]

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