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Qatar Ministry of Education keen to support visually challenged students

The students are being added to four government schools specialised in integrating visual impairment

Doha, Jan 05, 2023: The Ministry of Education and Higher Education in Qatar has announced that it will integrate visually impaired students with their peers, while providing facilities for them within the classroom and for teaching purposes such as enlargement devices and printed curricula in a larger size.

The Ministry has stated that the evaluation of the category has started at Rou’a Assessment Advice and Support Centre to determine the level of their actual performance and the necessary services for their individual needs, and then integrate them with their peers from regular classes, with the aim to achieve equal learning opportunities for all

In a statement to Qatar News Agency on the occasion of World Braille Day on Jan 4, Fatima Al-Saadi, the Acting Director of the Special Education and Gifted Care Department at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education, said that visually impaired students are being integrated into four government schools specialised in integrating visual impairment, two of which are schools in the preparatory stage, and two in secondary stage for boys and girls. She added that students are trained and taught to read and write in the Braille method, and in mobility, recognition and guidance using the white cane. This is being done in partnership with the Al-Noor Institute for the Blind through specialised laboratories in schools.

Al-Saadi stated that the Ministry of Education and Higher Education has tied up with local and international centres specialised in assistive technology, such as Qatar Assistive Technology Center (Mada), which provides technological means for visually challenged students such as Obtecon, an electronic device that converts written material into words and letters and Magnifier, a magnifying glass to help the visually impaired read.

She also added that there are many programmes and applications for visually challenged students through teachers who are fluent in the Braille language, and to support family education services provided by these schools to parents of students with visual disabilities, through partnership and cooperation with social institutions such as the Qatar Social and Cultural Centre for Blind.

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