DepEd to build more special education schools in Mindanao

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ZAMBOANGA CITY: The Department of Education (DepEd) on Wednesday bared plans to put up more special education schools in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) as part of its literary programs.

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DepEd-ARMM Secretary Jamar Kulayan said special schools will be constructed in Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao and Basilan.

Kulayan said there are only two special education schools in the Muslim region—one in Jolo, Sulu, and one in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi.

Kulayan, who is also a lawyer, recently signed an order revitalizing the special education program and to make sure that (special) schools are available in the Muslim region.

Special education schools cater to students with learning disabilities, communication disabilities, emotional and behavioral disorders, physical disabilities, and developmental disabilities.

“While the long-term and eventual focus is integration and mainstreaming, key activities shall be undertaken toward this goal including profiling and mapping of differently-able, school-aged children, establishment of special education centers, identification and training of qualified teachers and trainers, provision of support system, regular monitoring and evaluation, close coordination with the Department of Education Central Office and other stakeholders, and undertake resourcing to sustain and expand program if needed,” Kulayan explained.

Kulayan also directed school divisions to identify possible sites of SPED schools and to coordinate with the local office of the Department of Social Welfare and Development for initial listing and hiring of prospective teachers for specialized training.

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