Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) participated in conference to chart ways on providing quality education for the deaf children. The two day conference was held in conjunction with the Kenya Society for the Deaf Children (KSDC) who were the organizers and the Ministry of Education Science and Technology (MoEST).
Education Cabinet Secretary Prof. Jacob Kaimenyi who presided over the opening session said the government will provide the necessary support to ensure that no single child is denied his/her absolute right to education.
“It is our collective responsibility to ensure that learners with disabilities and other special needs in education receive equitable access to quality education and professional services that meet their specific and individual needs.” Said Kaimenyi during the event that took place between the 20th and 22nd August 2014 took place at the KICD auditorium.
KSDC national chairman Mr. Francis Nganga said the society had invested a lot in the education, health and general welfare of the deaf children since its formation in the year 1958.
Mr. Nganga said that the conference aim was to address the performance of the hearing impaired children in national exams which places them at a disadvantage in accessing the opportunities granted to persons with disabilities by the constitution.
KICD was presented by Mr. Francis Nduati a curriculum developer and expert in special needs education who took the audience through an overview of the curriculum development process. He said KICD has established a section that will deal with issues that are related to learners with special needs in the curriculum. The section will advocate for a curriculum and curriculum support materials for learners with special needs. He also gave the different types of curricular that were suitable for learners with hearing impairment. These include the adopted, adapted, specialist and specialized curricular.
Officers from the Kenya National Examination Council (KNEC) who was also part of the facilitators; discussed the challenges in examining special needs learners. Some of the challenges mentioned by the KNEC officers were lack of resources for Kenya Sign Language, poor infrastructure, insufficient government funding and non commitment to Special Needs Education.
Kenya National Union Teachers (KNUT) Secretary General Mr. Wilson Sossion who closed the conference urged KICD to work towards developing curriculum that is specifically tailored to meet the needs of hearing impaired learners. He also urged KNEC to rank this category of learners when releasing exams due to the difficulties they undergo in learning.
Also in attendance were the Director Quality Assurance and Standards Mr. Mohammed Mwinyipembe, the Education Secretary Madam Leah Rotich and Kenya Society for the Deaf Children Director Mr. Makarius Kathenya.