Deaf and mute students of a school staged a protest on Monday and accused the Rajasthan government of ignoring their needs.
Students of the state-run Seth Anandilal Poddar Senior Secondary school demanded that their principal be replaced with one capable of understanding sign language.
They said the new arrangement of two shifts in a single day was taxing and that it should be reverted back to the set up of a single shift per day.
The students protested outside their school on JLN Road with placards reading ‘we want those who understand our language’.
A parents’ body of the students also submitted a letter in this regard to Rajasthan Education Minister Vasudev Devnani on Monday.
The demand for single shift classes and change of the incumbent principal was mentioned in the letter.
It was written that many of the students come to the school from far off areas, beyond 60 km, and the two shift arrangement was not feasible for them.
Yogendra Kumar Joshi, secretary of the parents’ association, claimed that the principal and some of the newly-recruited teachers have no knowledge of sign language, therefore, the students were finding it hard to communicate with them.
“The students cannot take up the matter with the principal as she does not understand sign language.
“There is one interpreter which is insufficient. Some of the newly recruited teachers also cannot communicate with the students,” he said.
Nivita Devyani, whose son studies in class 9, said most of the students are facing difficulties because the principal wants to run the school as a regular education institution.
“They are special children and they cannot be treated as normal kids. It is important that there is proper communication between students and faculty,” she said.
Ashok Kumar Sharma, assistant district education officer, Jaipur, said the two-shift system was introduced after the school principal asked for it.
However, following the students’ demand the decision was withdrawn today, Sharma said.
“After the students’ demand today, we withdrew the two-shift order. Classes will be held in a single shift from August 1,” he said.
He said the teachers who do not know sign language are being trained separately so that the issue can be resolved.