KNUT Calls For More Sign Language Interpreters and Teachers Employed
The Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) has through their Kirinyaga Branch implored the government to consider recruiting more special needs interpreters.
According to them a lack of adequate specialized personnel especially sign language interpreters is a barrier to the deaf’s ability to articulate their agendas.
The KNUT County Chairperson Mr Alex Ngondi and the Executive Secretary Mr Patrick Kanaiyu said that People living with disabilities (PLWDs) such as the deaf are also part of the society and should be included in all ongoing activities.
The two KNUT officials were speaking while in Kutus Town where they were preparing for the county’s Post-World Teachers Day celebrations.
“The deaf are just people like us, they need to communicate, either to pass information or seek an understanding of various subjects,” said Kanaiyu.
The Executive Secretary was concerned that the number of teachers and sign language interpreters in all sectors is not adequate.
Kanaiyu called for the establishment of training programs to make the general public aware of the importance of assisting the deaf.
He said that the country does not have enough sign language personnel or teachers.
KNUT called on the government to provide training to all stakeholders, including the media to ensure that the deaf has a forum and ways of communicating with the rest of the world.
Kanaiyu singled out public gatherings where deaf people are left to communicate among themselves because they were not provided with any assistance to ensure that they are included in the agenda that is being discussed.
“These people have been left to communicate among themselves, in public gatherings, there are no interpreters and the deaf remain seated in special positions chatting on their own issues because they normally don’t understand what is going on,” said Kanaiyu.
Besides, Kanaiyu said that having interpreters at all public gatherings will involve them more and enable them to have their contributions recognized everywhere.
According to the executive official, with the new Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC), they are working together with the County government to ensure that issues of education are streamlined and that there widespread confusion about whether the new curriculum should start with ECDE or Grade One.
On his part, the County’s KNUT Chairperson said that the President’s task force shall address all complaints raised by teachers and parents.
“We are happy with the task force on CBC. We have been receiving a lot of complaints not only from parents but also from our staff. We will soon provide amicable solutions on all contested issues, said Ngondi.