Impact of educational inclusion on children with visual impairment in Malawi

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In this edition of the Educator, experts from around the world reflect on the development of inclusion for children with visual impairment in several countries. The article from Malawi provides a snapshot of some of the implications of inclusion for children with visual impairment in South-Eastern Africa. It forms part ofa wider collaborative study investigating the educational inclusion of children with visual impairment in Malawi . The authors briefly discuss some of the challenges policymakers face when deciding on how best to educate children who are blind in mainstream schools.

Some ideas for improving provision for these children include:

  • More support to school staff through basic INSET training programmes on how to include children with visual impairment;
  • Develop learning and teaching strategies that benefit all children in the class;
  • Develop graded reading schemes for children who are blind;
  • Encourage itinerant teachers to work closely with class teachers in developing learning resources and teaching techniques such as basic Braille;
  • Explore the use of vacation Braille schools or intensive short term placements at special schools/resource centres to support Braille learning for children in mainstream classes;
  • Identify ‘Braille Champions’ among itinerant teachers who could share their expertise with less experienced colleagues.
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