Tuesday March 5, 2013
Formal education causes many with learning disabilities to lose out
By CALVIN YEO
KUCHING: The failure of formal education from Standard One right up to tertiary education has left many of those with learning disabilities unable to contribute to the nation’s economic growth.
As a result of this, the country suffered a total loss of RM9.2bil annually in lost opportunities due to the exclusion of this group who could be productive as well, said Community College Education Department director-general Amir Md Noor.
“The schools have not catered for this group of people with learning disabilities and they have not been given due attention.
“Some may be fast learners while some may not,” he told reporters at a press conference here yesterday.
He said the Higher Education Ministry, through community colleges, had therefore implemented modules specially tailored for those with learning disabilities in six community colleges in six states namely, Negri Sembilan, Pahang, Perak, Penang, Sarawak and Selangor.
These colleges have so far enrolled 6,784 students where they are undergoing special skills courses.
“We want to train this group of people so that they can be productive and contribute to the nation’s growth,” he added.
Based on statistics from the Social Welfare Department in 2011, there were 359,203 people with disabilities who had registered for the special skills certificate programme offered by the community colleges.
Out of this figure, 134,659 were those with learning disabilities.
Meanwhile, a two-day Malaysia’s Life Long Learning (MY3L) carnival will be launched here on March 12. It is expected to be launched by Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin.
Amir said the carnival was an initiative by the Government to make life-long learning a culture and practice among the society.