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March 24, 2004

A school for deaf faces closure

From: The Daily Star - Bangladesh - Mar 24, 2004

A Correspondent, Bhola

The Bohla Hi-Care School for dumb and hearing-impaired children is facing closure due to lack of government support and funds, its authorities said.

The school was established in 1995 on a government land. at the initiatives of local elite with technical support from the Hi Care Society in Dhaka.

Since then the Hi-Care Society has been giving support to the school authorities in identifying hearing-impaired children through test and providing hearing aids to the children who study in the school free of cost. Two teachers were also trained by the Hi-Care Society.

The school runs with financial assistance from local elite and government grants.

Thirty hearing-impaired children are on roll. Most of the students are from poor families.

Four teachers, a rickshaw van driver and a peon are not getting salaries for over a year due to fund shortage, its headmistress Shajda Yeasmin told this correspondent.

She said the Minister for Social Welfare and the State Minister for Religious Affair visited the school but no initiative was taken for arranging its own building and regular sanction of annual funds.

Dr. Khadeja Khanam, joint secretary of the Ministry of Science and Information Technology gave a computer for its students last year.

The headmistress said some of its students, after completing courses at the school, were trained in technical institutes and became self-reliant.

There are about two thousand hearing-impaired children in Bhola district, according to a survey by an NGO.

© 2004 The Daily Star